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Studies in 
The Linguistic Sciences 



?4:l-2 1994 COPY 












EDITOR: Elmer H. Antonsen; 

REVIEW EDITOR: James H. Yoon; 

EDITORIAL ASSISTANTS: Sara Michael, Mark A. Honegger 


EDITORIAL BOARD: Eyamba G. Bokamba, Chin-chuan Cheng, 
Jennifer S. Cole, Georgia M. Green, Hans Henrich Hock, Braj B. 
Kachru, Yamuna Kachru, Chin-W. Kim, Charles W. Kisseberth, 
Howard Maclay, Jerry L. Morgan, Rajeshwari Pandharipande, James 
H. Yoon, and Ladislav Zgusta. 

AIM: SLS is intended as a forum for the presentation of the latest 
original research by the faculty and students of the Department of 
Linguistics, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Scholars 
outside the Department and from other institutions are also cordially 
invited to submit original linguistic research for consideration. In all 
cases, articles submitted for publication will be reviewed by a panel of 
at least two experts in the appropriate field to determine suitability 
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SPECIAL ISSUES: Since its inception SLS has devoted one issue each 
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issues is given inside the back cover. 

BOOKS FOR REVIEW: Review copies of books may be sent to the 
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subscriptions should be addressed to SLS Subscriptions, Department 
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Price per issue: $8.00 







James H. Yoon 




Preface v 

AKINBIYI AKINLABI: Alignment constraints in ATR harmony 1 

ANDREW BarsS: Derivations and reconstruction 19 

J. I^RASER Bennett: lambicity in Thai 39 

DEBORAH Milam Berkeley: The OCP and gradient data 59 

Rakesh Mohan Bhatt: On experiencers and subjects of perfect predicates 73 


Comp? Some evidence from Old Irish 85 

JENNIFER Cole & Charles W. KISSEBERTH: An optimal domains theory of harmony 


Michel DeGraff: The morphology-syntax interface in creolization (and diachrony) 1 15 

Maarten DE Wind: Checking interrogative subject pronouns in French 133 

ALEXIS DIMITRIADIS: Clitics and island-insensitive object drop 153 

George Fowler: Verbal prefixes as functional heads 171 

Stefan FRISCH: Reanalysis precedes syntactic change: Evidence from Middle English 187 

Janine Graziano-King: Selection properties of raising verbs 203 

Georgia M. Green: The structure of context: The representation of pragmatic 

restrictions in HPSG 215 

Rebecca Herman: "La Double Vie De W" or the status of [w] in Karuk 233 

Elizabeth Hume & David Odden: Contra [consonantal] 245 

JONGHO JUN: a constraint-based analysis of place assimilation typology 263 

Mark KaS & FRANS ZwartS: Intervention phenomena: Towards an extended 

monotonicity calculus 279 

David KathmaN: Infinitival complements in a Minimalist theory of grammar 293 

Andreas Kathol: Parasitic "gaps" in German revisited 303 

BYONG-Kwon KIM: VP-intemal subject hypothesis and ATB gap parallelism 317 

Martina LINDSETH: Overt expletives and thematic subjects in West Slavic 333 

JairoNUNES: Another look at Lithuanian impersonal passives 347 

MaRI Broman OLSEN: The semantics and pragmatics of lexical aspect features 36 1 

Janina Rado: Complexity limitations on parsers and grammars 377 

Carson T. SCHUTZE: Serbo-Croatian second position clitic placement: Syntax is not 

enough 389 

KUO-MING Sung: a typological study of NP extraction from QP 403 

Ellen Thompson: The syntax and semantics of temporal adjunct clauses 4 1 9 

NatsukoTSUJIMURA: Resultatives and motion verbs in Japanese 429 

Spyridoula Varlokosta: Factive complements and wh-extraction 441 

Gert Webelhuth & FARRELL ACKERMAN: German idioms: An empirical approach 455 

Mary Wu: Demonstratives, focus, and the interpretation of complex NPs in Mandarin 

Chinese 473 


The papers included in this volume are based on those 
presented at the 5th Annual Meeting of the Formal Linguistics 
Society of Mid-America, held May 20-22, 1994 at the University of 
Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Thirty-two papers are included in this 
volume, with the exception of papers by keynote speakers (James 
McCloskey, Angelika Kratzer, and Donca Steriade) and presentations 
by J-M Authier, Gorka Elordieta, David Gohre and Ljiliana Progovac. 
They are published as a special combined issue (volume 24, 1/2) of 
the department journal. Studies in the Linguistic Sciences. 

I would like to thank a number of individuals and organizations 
for their generous support during the conference and in the 
(delayed) production of the proceedings. The conference was made 
possible through the sponsorship of the Department of Linguistics, 
the Beckman Institute, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the 
Cognitive Science/Artificial Intelligence Steering Committee at the 
University of Illinois, and the Department of Foreign Languages and 
Literatures, Illinois State University. The following units at Illinois 
also made contributions to the conference: the Language Learning 
Laboratory, East Asian Languages and Cultures, Germanic Languages 
and Literatures, Spanish-Italian-Portuguese, French, Slavic 
Languages and Literatures, the Division of English as an International 
Language, the Center for African Studies, and the Program in South 
and West Asian Studies. 

In the preparatory stages and during the conference, I was 
privileged to have the cooperation of the local organizing committee: 
Professors Elmer Antonsen, Elabbas Benmamoun, Chin-Chuan Cheng, 
Jennifer Cole, Laura Downing, Georgia Green, Lorie Heggie (Illinois 
State University), Hans Hock, Charles Kisseberth, Jerry Morgan, and 
Alessandro Zucchi. The outstanding work of my assistant Simon 
Donnelly needs to be singled out for special mention. It was his work 
that made the sometimes overwhelming task of organizing a 
conference seem almost routine. I would also like to acknowledge the 
help of student volunteers during the conference, in particular, Molly 
Homer, Elaine Hsiao, and Khalil Iskarous. 

In the production of this volume, 1 was aided by Sara Michael 
and Mark Honegger. Their expertise in editorial work is largely 
responsible for the professional look and organization of this volume. 
The editors for SLS, Hans Hock and Elmer Antonsen, have provided 
much editorial advice for which I am deeply indebted. 

January 1996 James H. Yoon 




Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Akinbiyi Akinlabi 
Rutgers University 

This paper proposes an analysis of ATR harmony 
within the optimality theoretic alignment constraints called 
featural alignment. The types of ATR harmony discussed 
here are those in which the harmonic ATR value is mor- 
phemic or morpheme level. It is proposed that the same set 
of constraints are applicable in both cases. Finally, I provide 
additional support for a central theme of featural align- 
ment: that misalignment occurs when a feature co-ocur- 
rence constraint dominates a feature alignment constraint. 

1. Introduction: Featural Alignment 

There are at least three sources of ATR harmony in the world's 
languages. ATR harmony may result from an underlying ATR mor- 
pheme as in signifying the difference between completive and 
incompletive aspects in Kanembu, in (1). 

(1) Kanembu (Jouannet 1982. Roberts 1994) 

Completive [-ATR] Incompletive [+ATR] 

'gonala 'I took' 'gonAlci '1 am taking' 

'dallsla 'I got up' 'dAUAkl 'I am getting up' 

dalla'lci 'I soaked' dAlJA'kl 'I am soaking' 

barena'k^i '1 cultivated' bArenA'kl 'I am cultivating' 

It may also be nonmorphemic, as in Kalahari in (2) where vowels 
within a morpheme must agree in ATR value. This is by far the 
commonest type. 

(2) Kalahari (Williamson 1969, Jenewari 1973)' 
ere 'female' ere 'name' 

bele 'light' bere 'case/trouble' 

mono 'to sleep' koro 'rafia palm' 

polo 'compound' olo 'cough' 

The third source of harmony is a case in which one of the vowels in a 
morpheme is underlyingly specified for the harmonic ATR feature to 
which all other vowels harmonize, such as is the case in Wolof 
(Archangeli and Pulleyblank in press). The discussion in this paper 
will be restricted to the first two cases. The reader is referred to 
Archangeli and Pulleyblank (in press) for a discussion of a number of 
cases of the third type, including Wolof. 

In this paper, I will pursue a line of thought in which the forms 
of ATR harmony in (1) and (2) are accounted for within the Opti- 
mality theoretic alignment constraints (McCarthy and Prince 1993a, b; 

2 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

Prince and Smolensky 1993), called Featural Alignment (Akinlabi 
1994; see also Kirchner 1993 and Pulleyblank 1993). 

(3) Featural Alignment 
Align (PFeat, GCat) 
Any occurrence of a prosodic feature is aligned with some 
grammatical category. i 

PFeat consists of a set prosodic features in the Firthian sense of 
the word, features which span grammatical categories. As is well 
known such features may include pitch, nasality, roundness, palatal- 
ization, and the like. The question that arises is, in such cases as 
Kanembu ATR in (1) why does a morpheme get realized as part of 
another morpheme? The answer is that features require licensing, 
hence their association with the stem. Featural Alignment in (3) 
aligns a free harmonic element with specific edges of grammatical 
categories, 2 or with an entire grammatical category. 

Under Featural Alignment an edge does not necessarily mean a 
morphological edge; an edge is defined for a PFeat based on possible 
licensor. From Licensing theory, we know that universally, feature 
licensors can be either a mora or a root node (Ito 1989; Ito and 
Mester 1993; Ito, Mester and Padgett 1993, etc.). Therefore while 
edges in tones refer to the initial or final mora, edges in nasal har- 
mony and the like may refer to the first or last root node, i.e. real 
morphological edges. 

In its original conception, Featural Alignment was designed as a 
featural version of McCarthy and Prince's (1993b) Align (MCat, 
MCat), to handle cases of featural affixation (see Akinlabi 1994). Here 
I apply it to cases of ATR harmony where the feature may or may 
not be a formative but is underlyingly free. 

To be clear, Featural Alignment (3) applies when the following 
two conditions are satisfied: (a) the harmonic feature is underlyingly 
free, i.e. underlyingly unassociated and (b) there is one occurrence 
per grammatical category (which follows from the fact that they are 
edge aligned). Therefore, free featural affixes as well as underlyingly 
free morpheme level features spanning grammatical categories (e.g. 
Vowel Harmony) may fall under the purview of Featural Alignment. 

In their study of alignment in regular affixation, McCarthy and 
Prince (1993b) observe that an alignment constraint, such as one , 
which aligns the left edge of one morpheme with the right edge of ( 
another, may be violated when dominated by a prosodic constraint, 
such as one that disallows a coda. This may force a suffix to be real- 
ized as an infix. A major theme of Featural Alignment (3) is that a 
feature alignment constraint may be violated under pressure from 
feature cooccurrence constraints, leading to misalignment (cf. 
Pulleyblank 1993). A featural suffix may for example be realized 
elsewhere in the stem, resulting in featural infixation, as shown in 
Akinlabi's (1994) analysis of Chaha labialization. 

Akinlabi: Alignment constraints in ATR harmony 3 

In the following sections I illustrate the application of featural 
alignment with ATR harmony in two languages, Kanembu and 
Kalahari Ijo. 

2. Kanembu 

Kanembu. a Nilo-Saharan language of the Sahara group spoken 
in Chad and Niger, illustrates a system in which [+ATR] is a mor- 
pheme. Citing Jouannet (1982) Roberts (1994) gives the vowel 
system of Kanembu, as in (4). 

(4) Kanembu vowel system (Data from Roberts 1994) 

[-I-ATR] (Tense) Vowels: i e A o u 

[-ATR] (Lax) Vowels: 18 9 a o U 

In Kanembu, the difference between the completive and the incom- 
pletive aspects of the verb are marked by vowel quality. The 
incompletive forms are characterized by [+ATR] vowels while the 
completive forms have [-ATR] vowels, as the examples in (5) and (6) 
reveal. (The central [+ATR] vowel [U] corresponds to the two [-ATR] 
vowels [3] and [a].) 

(5) Forms composed of the verb root, followed by the first person 
subject pronoun marker -ndki or -nAki. 

Completive [-ATR] Incompletive [+ATR] 

'gonaki 'I took' 'gon/ilci 'I am taking' 

'dallslci 'I got up' 'dAllAJci 'I am getting up' 

dalls'kj 'I soaked' dAllA'k'i 'I am soaking' 

barens'k'i 'I cultivated' bArenA'kl 'I am cultivating' 

(6) Forms with other person markers: -/ or -/ (3rd person singular), 
-yei or -ye/ (3rd person plural), and -ndmi or -nAini (2nd person 

Completive Incompletive 

'fai 'he woke up' 'f/Ci 'he is waking up' 

'garcei 'they encircled' 'gArcei 'they are encircling' 

'darrsirTi 'you strolled' 'dArrAmi 'you are strolling' 

The analysis of the above forms is straightforward. Following 
Roberts (1994) I assume that the incompletive aspect marker is a 
free [-i-ATR], which is a featural affix. The completive aspect is 
unmarked, and it takes the default [-ATR]. ATR is licensed by any 
mora in this language. Finally, the domain of the aspectual marker is 
the entire clitic group, which I will refer to as the stem. 

In Optimality theory (Prince and Smolensky 1993, McCarthy and 
Prince 1993a, b), the input of each process is associated, via the func- 
tion GEN, with a set of output candidates which are evaluated against 
a set of ranked constraints. The candidate which best satisfies the 
constraint system is the optimal form. GEN is restricted by the prin- 
ciple of Containment, which dictates that the input must be contained 
in the output. All the information present in the input form is pre- 

4 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

sent in the output form as well. Employing Featural Alignment (3) 
within the above approach, the following constraints account for 
Kanembu ATR harmony. 

(7) Align- [+ATR] 

Align (Inc.[+ATR], Stem) 

Any occurrence of the incompletive [+ATR] must be aligned with 

the right and left edges of the stem. 3 

(8) *Gapped 

Autosegmental Association may not be gapped. 

(Archangeli and Pulleyblank in press, Pulleyblank 1993, Kirch- 

ner 1993). 

Note that right and left edges in (7) imply rightmost and leftmost 
mora respectively, given featural alignment. Three additional con- 
straints enforce faithfulness of the output. Two of these, Lex-Feat 
and Lex-Link, are adopted from Ito, Mester and Padgett (1993). (see 
also Pulleyblank 1993, Archangeli and Pulleyblank 1993 for 
Recover-F and Recover-P). The third constraint is Parse-ATR. These 
constraints are defined below in (9)-(ll). 

(9) Parse [+ATR] 

Incompletive [+ATR] must be parsed. 

(See Ito 1986, Prince and Smolensky 1993, McCarthy and Prince 


(10) Lex-Feat 

All features should be part of lexical input. 

(11) Lex-Link 

All association lines should be part of lexical input. 

The construction of a grammar in Optimality theory is a matter 
of determining the proper ranking of CON, the set of constraints out 
of which grammars are constructed. A constraint tableau such as the 
one in (12) is employed as a calculation device. Constraints are ar- 
ranged on a tableau from left to right in order of domination. On a 
typical constraint tableau a line between two constraints indicates 
domination, but a dashed or dotted line is used to show that there is 
no evidence of ranking between two constraints. Constraint violations 
are indicated by *, and fatal constraint violations are indicated by !. 
Below the fatal violations, cells are shaded to indicate their irrele- 
vance to determining the comparison at hand. The optimal candidate 
is indicated by "S". 

The following tableau illustrates how the constraints produce a 
form such as 'gonAk"! 'I am taking'. For clarity I show the partial auto- 
segmental representation of each candidate output in (13), as 
arranged in the tableau. In the following as well as subsequent re- 
presentations, capital letters represent vowels unspecified for ATR. 



Akinlabi: Alignment constraints in ATR harmony 

(12) Input: [+ATR]; gO + n3kl 



Align- [+ATR] 











•>* 'qonAkl 


(13) gO n3kl 


gO n3kl 

I / 

gO n3kl 
\ / 

gO n3kl 

\ I / 

It is assumed that given the input in (12), GEN supplies at least 
the four candidates listed in the first column. The tableau (12) shows 
that a violation of any of the three constraints Parse- [-1- ATR], Align- 
[-t-ATR] and *Gapped renders the output nonoptimal, since there is a 
candidate that violates none of the constraints. Note also that there is 
no evidence of ranking among the three constraints above; this is 
indicated with the dotted line between them. Note that parsing 
[+ATR] implies a violation of Lex-Link, since the association is not 
underlying. Therefore Parse- [-1- ATR] must dominate Lex-Link. I have 
not included Lex-Feat here because it is irrelevant to this example. 

In the case of Kanembu discussed above, a rule based approach 
faces difficulty since there has to be an arbitrary decision on the 
direction of linking and spreading. Note that it is not clear from the 
data whether the [+ATR] affix links first to the verb or to the suffix 
before spreading. A constraint based approach does not face such 
difficulty since there can only be domination, and not ordering, 
among constraints. 

The crucial issues to note from the discussion of Kanembu. with 
a [-I-ATR] formative are that [-i-ATR] is underlyingly free and the do- 
main of [+ATR] is the entire clitic group. These same properties are 
found in Kalahari, a language in which [-i-ATR] is not a formative, but 
in which [-i-ATR] is also underlyingly free. The Kalahari system is 
more interesting in that alignment constraints may be violated. I 
now turn to discuss this system, showing that the system can be 
accounted for with the same constraints as for Kanembu. 

3. Kalahari 

On the surface, Kalahari, a Niger-Congo Language of Nigeria, has 
nine oral vowels: [i, i, e, e, a, o, o, u, u], and nine corresponding nasal 
vowels (Jenewari 1985), which may be split into [-f-ATR] and [-ATR] 
sets as in (14). 

(14) Kalahari vowels (Williamson 1969, Jenewari 1973, 1980, 1985) 

[-I-ATR] Vowels: [i, e, o, u] 

[-ATR] Vowels: [i, e, a, o, ii]. 

From this list, it is obvious that every vowel has a [-(-/-ATR] counter- 
part except the low vowel /a/. Within a morpheme, mid vowels of 

Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

the same set cooccur with each other, and those of different sets do 
not cooccur; as the examples in (15) show. 

(15) Roots with mid vowels 



a. ere 





'to sleep' 



cf. *ere 


b. 61616 



'oil palm' 






'rafia palm' 









Like the mid vowels, high vowels split neatly into [+ATR] and 
[-ATR] sets. They cooccur with other high and mid vowels of their 
respective sets. Thus they both trigger and undergo harmony as the 
examples in (16) show. 

(16) Roots with high vowels 

[+ATR] [-ATR] 





'become rotten' 




























'burn V. i.' 
























'folk story' 




'a (Kalahari) village name' 






'female (goat)' 

A crucial observation that emerges from the examples in (15) and 
(16) is that there is at most one ATR specification per morpheme. 
Therefore ATR is a morpheme level feature (meaning one occurrence 
per morpheme) which does not have to be specified in the 
underlying representation of any particular vowel. ATR is thus a 
free underlying feature. 

The forms with the low vowel /a/ reveal a different picture 
from what we have observed so far. The low vowel /a/ cooccurs with 
itself and with other vowels regardless of their surface ATR 
specification, as (17) shows. Williamson (1969:107) gives the occur- 

Akinlabi: Alignment constraints in ATR harmony 7 

ring patterns (with a low vowel) within a morpheme as: ia. ai, au, ua, 
aa, (ia, ai, au and ua), noting that the patterns in parentheses are 
more rare but that they occur. These patterns exhaust all the ex- 
pected forms between high and low vowels in bisyllables. Note 
however that the same is true for mid vowels too, as the following 
examples reveal. 


Roots with 

low vowels 





'be white' 






'be pregnant' 


'be(come) fat/big' 













'really (adverbial) 












'bitter leaf 
















'be small' 



In (17), such forms as dawo 'kolanut', bomd 'personal name', etc., 
reveal the fact that the active harmonic feature cannot be [-ATR] 
regardless of the direction in which harmony is assumed to go, since 
[+ATR] vowels occur to the left or right of vowel /a/. Note that [-ATR] 
high and mid vowels can also occur on either side of /a/ as expected, 
as in dawo 'dream', sond 'five'. In fact it is impossible to explain a 
form like awuwdn 'yawn', with a [-i-ATR] vowel sandwiched between 
two [-ATR] vowels, within such an assumption. The traditional ap- 
proach to this problem is to assume that vowel /a/ is neutral with 
respect to harmony (Williamson 1969, Jenewari 1973). But this 
position cannot be accurate because across morphemes only vowels 
of the [-ATR] set can occur before /a/, as the examples in (18) show. 

(18) i da 'my father' cf. *i da 

i dawoo 'my kolanut' cf. *i dawoo 

iye adoo 'my inlaw' cf. *iye adoo 

Therefore /a/ cannot be neutral with respect to harmony. 

I propose therefore that the active harmonic feature is [-i-ATR]. This 
implies that forms such as ddwo and bomd have free underlying 
[-f-ATR], while morphemes like dawo 'dream', sond 'five' lack [-i-ATR]. 
In such forms as (18) vowel /a/ blocks the propagation of [-i-ATR]. 
The occurrence of vowel /a/ with [+ATR] vowels however still re- 
mains to be accounted for. Following the practice in Archangeli and 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

Pulleyblank (in press) I represent morphemes with free harmonic 
[+ATR] as in (19a), and those without it as in (19b) 

(19) a. b. 

+ ATR 



And finally, prefixes, including all pronoun clitics, undergo har- 
mony, as shown by the examples in (20). The domain of harmony in 
Kalahari is thus the clitic group. ^ 


(20) a. o toruu 
o toriiu 

b. 6 boo 
6 legii 

c. i fenfr 
i finiT 

d. ori okiih 
ori legiiri 

'his chalk' 
'his face' 

'you (pi.) are to come' 
'you (pi.) are to sit down' 

'my bird' 
'my firewood' 

'he sat down' 
'he swam' 



ye obirl 
iye oboko 

ini olokuih 
ni eriih 

'my dog' 
'my fowl' 

'they shouted' 
'they saw (it)' 

Suffixes, however, do not harmonize with the verb root. They 
surface as [-ATR], which 1 assume here to be the default. Kalahari 
tense suffixes confirm this. (The crucial case in all of the examples 
below is the last one, the nonalternating suffix -te; since we do not 
expect the vowel /a/ to alternate.) The relevant suffixes are in 

(21) Boma Gogo fomu-ba 'Boma will beat Gogo' 

boma / gogo / beat / TNS 

Boma Gogo fomu-ari 'Boma is beating Gogo' 

Boma Gogo fomu-m^ 'Boma beats Gogo' 

Boma Gogo fomii-tee 'Boma has beaten Gogo' 

The basic generalizations from the above description of Kalahari 
ATR harmony are as follows: 

(i) The active harmonic feature is [+ATR]. 

(ii) There is only one [+ATR] value per morpheme; some morphemes 

have it. others don't, 
(iii) Mid and high vowels within the same morpheme have the same 

[ATR] value, 
(iv) Mid and high vowels with any [ATR] value can cooccur with 

vowel /a/ within the same morpheme. Vowel /a/ blocks the 

propagation of [+ATR] across morphemes, 
(v) Prefixes, but not suffixes, undergo harmony. 




Akinlabi: Alignment constraints in ATR harmony 9 

3.1 Analysis 

Within an Optimality theoretic approach employing Featural 
Alignment (3), ATR harmony in Kalahari can be accounted for with 
the same constraint system established for Kanembu, with a number 
of modifications which I will make as they become necessary. The 
effects of ATR harmony in Kalahari may be derived from the opera- 
tion of two feature alignment constraints, stated in (22) and (23). I 
assume that Kalahari harmony crucially involves two alignment 
constraints because the domain of each constraint is different. ^ 


Align ([+ATR], Root, R) 

Any occurrence of [+ATR] is aligned with the right edge of a root. 


Align ([+ATR], Stem. L) 

Any occurrence of [+ATR] is aligned with the left edge of a stem 
(clitic group). 

(24) Parse-ATR 

Underlying [+ATR] must be parsed within the morpheme. 

As noted before the right and left edges here imply the rightmost 
and leftmost moras respectively. Both of the alignment constraints 
properly ensure that prefixes, but not suffixes constitute the domain 
of ATR harmony. Given the traditional morphological hierarchy, the 
root is properly contained in the clitic group; or morphological word 
(see McCarthy and Prince 1993b:6), therefore where there is no 
prefix, the left edge of the morphological word coincides with the left 
edge of the root. 

3.1.1 Forms with mid and high vowels 

I now proceed to illustrate how an interaction of these con- 
straints produce the output forms in Kalahari, including relevant 
constraint domination. I begin with the simplest of the cases, the 
examples in (15) and (16) with high and mid vowels only. These ex- 
amples may be accounted for by aligning the harmonic ATR feature 
with both edges of the root morpheme. The interaction of the two 
alignment constraints with Parse-ATR produce these cases. They do 
not however provide crucial ranking information between these 
three constraints. The reason is that the satisfaction of an alignment 
constraint implies the satisfaction of Parse-ATR. Tableau (25) illus- 
trates an example with only mid vowels, but the same tableau is 
adequate for a form with both high and mid vowels. For trisyllabic 
forms, satisfaction of *Gapped is required as well, but I will not 
illustrate these here for reasons of space. 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

(25) Lexical Input: ErE, +A ; Output: ere 'female' 














•s- ere 'female' 


As in the case of Kanembu, for such inputs as these the optimal out- 
put candidate is one in which both of the alignment constraints and 
Parse-ATR are satisfied. The crucial constraint conflict is between 
Parse-ATR which demands that free underlying [-i-ATR] be parsed, 
and Lex-Link which demands all surface association be underlying. 
Thus the crucial candidates are the first, which violates only Parse- 
ATR, and the last, which violates only Lex-Link. In this case since the 
optimal candidate is the last one, Lex-Link is violated in favor of 
Parse-ATR. Parse-ATR thus crucially dominates Lex-Link. (Parse- 
ATR » Lex-Link). 

Let us now consider a comparable input in which there is no 
underlying [-i-ATR], the optimal candidate is EcE (ere) ere 'name', the 
candidate that is completely faithful to underlying representation. 
All other serious candidates are ruled out by the Lex-Feat, since they 
have the feature [-i-ATR] which is not underlying. In the following 
tableau, I have left out the alignment constraints and Parse-ATR, 
since they are irrelevant here.^ 

(26) Input: ErE, 0; Output: 
Candidates Lex-Feat 

ere 'name' 

^ ere 'name' 










A violation of Lex-Feat implies a violation of Lex-Link, so these con- 
straints cannot be ranked with respect to each other. The above 
account takes care of the straightforward cases, i.e. those with high 
and mid vowels only, regardless of the number of moras in the root 

The dominance relation established in this section is Parse-ATR 
» Lex-Feat, Lex-Link. 

3.1.2 Forms with low vowels 

I now turn to roots with vowel /a/, bomd 'personal name', daw 6 
'kolanut'; as exemplified in (17). These examples provide crucial sup- 
port for a central theme of Featural Alignment (3): that alignment is 
violated only under pressure from feature cooccurrence constraints, 
establishing the relation: Feature Co-occurrence » Feature Alignment. 

Akinlabi: Alignment constraints in ATR harmony 


We observed above that /a/ is the only vowel that lacks a 
[+ATR] counterpart in Kalahari. Kalahari does lack a [+LO, +ATR] 
vowel. Following Archangeli and PuUeyblank (in press), we can ex- 
press this as a (grounded) constraint barring the association of [+ATR] 
to a mora linked to [+LO].8 

(27) *LO/ATR 

If [+L0] then not [-i-ATR]. 

The interaction of *LO/ATR (27) with Parse-ATR and the two align- 
ment constraints accounts for these forms. *LO/ATR is apparently 
unviolated in Kalahari, being surface true. This indicates that it is 
more harmonic to violate either or both alignment constraints and 
Parse-ATR in favor of *LO/ATR in Kalahari. It thus crucially domi- 
nates both alignment constraints and Parse-ATR. I present evidence 
for each domination in the next three tableaus. 

(28) *LO/ATR » Align-R, Input: bOmA, [+ATR] 











n^ boma 




The cases represented in tableau (28) are those in which the last 
mora is linked to [-i-Low]. The forms to compare in the tableau are the 
last two. In the last output candidate *bomce the underlying [-t-ATR] is 
properly aligned with both edges, but this is in violation of *LO/ATR. 
It is therefore not optimal. The optimal output bomd 'personal name' 
on the other hand violates Align-Right in favor of *LO/ATR. It thus 
shows a feature alignment constraint, Align-Right, violated under 
pressure from feature cooccurrence constraint, *LO/ATR. 

The tableau in (28) also provides evidence that underlying 
[-t-ATR] must be parsed if there is at all any chance to do that; even if 
it is not parsed onto the rightmost mora, providing evidence that 
Parse-ATR dominates Align-R. This constitutes the difference be- 
tween the first nonoptimal candidate boma and the actual output 
boma. The first candidate fails because there is a possibility of pars- 
ing [+ATR] on the initial mora, a possibility which is not utilized. So a 
parse violation is fatal if it is at all possible to parse. 

Along the same direction as the form bomd 'personal name', a 
form like ddwo 'kolanut' shows that Align-Left may be violated in 
favor of *LO/ATR, again providing crucial evidence that a feature 
alignment constraint is violated under pressure from a feature 
cooccurrence constraint. The following tableau illustrates the point. 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(29) *LO/ATR » Align-L; Input: dAwO. +ATR 








"ET dawo 







Tableau (29) represents forms in which the first mora is linked 
to [-i-Low]. The candidates to compare are the second candidate which 
is the optimal form, and the last candidate. In the last output candi- 
date *d3Swo, the underlying [-i-ATR] is properly aligned with both 
edges, in violation of *LO/ATR. It is therefore not optimal. The opti- 
mal output ddwo 'personal name' on the other hand violates Align- 
Left in favor of *LO/ATR; again showing a feature alignment con- 
straint, Align-Left, violated under pressure from a feature cooccur- 
rence constraint, *LO/ATR. 

Finally, a form like awuwdn 'yawn' shows that both alignment 
constraints may be violated at the same time under pressure from 

We can actually draw a parallel here between McCarthy's and 
Prince's Generalized Alignment and the account proposed above. In 
Generalized Alignment, McCarthy and Prince show that a suffix may 
be realized as an infix if an alignment constraint is dominated by a 
prosodic constraint such as *N0 CODA. In Featural Alignment, 
whether the feature is a morphemic (a featural affix) or morpheme 
level (one specification per morpheme), what forces misalignment is 
a cooccurrence constraint dominating an alignment constraint. I have 
demonstrated this here with ATR alignment constraints and a feature 
cooccurrence constraint between [+Low] and [-i-ATR]. 

In closing the discussion on the forms with [-i-ATR] mid and high 
vowels occurring in the same root with low vowel /a/, we note that 
these forms have a possible treatment in a rule based approach. A 
rule based approach recognizing [+ATR] as done here may treat dis- 
harmonic /a/ in two ways; (a) it may ban the creation of [£e] with 
structure preservation, or (b) it may ban the association of [+ATR] to 
a mora specified for [+Low], as done here. In either case, the rule 
based approach will be employing rules as well as constraints. The 
advantage of a constraint based approach is that it employs only 

Turning now to forms with entirely low vowels, outputs like dmd' 
town' indicate that underlying [+ATR] may not be parsed if a viola- 
tion of *LO/ATR will result. Therefore *LO/ATR must dominate 

Akinlabi: Alignment constraints in ATR harmony 
(30) *LO/ATR » Parse-ATR; Input: AmA, +ATR 







"A- ama 










None of the competing candidates fares any better than the first can- 
didate since they all violate *LO/ATR, a violation which is fatal. Thus 
in such cases, it is more harmonic not to parse the underlying [+ATR] 
at all if such parsing will lead to a violation of *LO/ATR. 

The question is, if we assume that [-i-ATR] is underlying in some 
of these forms with all low vowels, how come it is not realized on the 
prefix. The answer to that lies in the restriction on parsing. In 
Kalahari, [+ATR] must be parsed within the morpheme in which it is 
underlying, otherwise it becomes unclear what the source of the 
underlying [-f-ATR] is. If it cannot be parsed because it will violate 
*LO/ATR, it does not get parsed at all. 

Since underlying [+ATR] will not be parsed onto the prefix in an 
all low vowel root, the prediction of the above analysis is that all 
vowels preceding a vowel /a/ will be [-ATR]. That prediction is borne 
out by fact. 

So far I have established the following ranking among the con- 
straints introduced: 

(31) Overall constraint ranking: 

*LO/ATR » Parse-ATR » Align-R, Align-L » Lex-F, Lex-L 

The following combined tableau shows the forms parallel to 
those in tableaus (28)-(30), but without underlying [+ATR]. In this 
tableau, the constraints Parse-ATR, Align-R, and Align-L are vacu- 
ously satisfied since these constraints refer to underlying [-i-ATR]. 
Also in these cases the relevant faithfulness constraint is Lex-Feat, 
which ensures that all surface features are underlying. I have in- 
cluded all other constraints here for the sake of completeness. Capital 
letters in the input represent mid and low vowels without ATR 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

(32) Low vowel input without underlying [+ATR] 










I®- sDna 













f^ dawo 












A.. .A 

1^ awa 














In the above combinations with low vowels, the crucial contenders 
are forms which do not violate *LO/ATR since this violation immedi- 
ately rules them out. However we see that the most harmonic form is 
the one without a Lex-Feat violation, i.e. the form that is faithful to 
input representation. 

3.1.3 Prefixed forms 

Finally, I now briefly consider forms with prefixes. The interest- 
ing cases are the forms in which a low vowel intervenes between a 
mid or high vowel and the prefix. The interaction of the alignment 
constraints with *LO/ATR, *GAPPED, and Parse-ATR account for such 
forms. The generalization to account for is that the low vowel /a/ 
blocks the propagation of [-f-ATR]. The implication of this is that all 
such forms will result in the output iCaCi. This follows from the pro- 
hibition against linking [-t-ATR] to a low vowel by *LO/ATR, and the 
prohibition against skipping the intervening low vowel by *GAPPED. 
One interesting observation is that *GAPPED is never violated by un- 
derlyingly free features during alignment. The following tableau 
shows a disyllabic form with a prefix; giving the overall pattern 


Akinlabi: Alignment constraints in ATR harmony 


(33) Input : 

I + dAwO; 







Its' idawo 



















In this tableau, five candidates violate one of the undominated 
constraints: *LO/ATR; and *GAPPED, and are thus ruled out. The in- 
teresting cases are those that violate Parse-ATR and the optimal can- 
didate that violates an alignment constraint. The first candidate is 
ruled out because there is a possibility of parsing [-i-ATR] on the 
rightmost mora, a possibility which is not utilized. The last candidate 
is however interesting in another sense. This candidate violates 
Parse-ATR though [-hATR] is actually parsed! [+ATR] is parsed on the 
prefix vowel instead of the root, leading to an unnecessary dishar- 
monic prefix. 

4. Conclusion 

In Akinlabi (1994), tonal as well as segmental evidence was 
provided in support of a central theme of Featural Alignment, that 
feature cooccurrence constraints force the violation of feature align- 
ment. Tonal misalignment results from tonal cooccurrence constraints 
in Etsako; and labial misalignment results from labial co-occurrence 
constraints in Chaha. In this paper, I have provided additional sup- 
port from vowel harmony for the same theme: [-i-ATR] misalignment 
results from the feature cooccurrence constraints *LO/ATR. In addi- 
tion, I have demonstrated that Featural Alignment not only handles 
cases of featural affixation, but also cases of (free) morpheme level 
features. What is common to both cases is that such features are 
underlying free, i.e. underlyingly unlinked to any segment. 


*This paper forms part of work in progress on featural 
alignment. I am grateful to the audiences at the Phonology reading 
group at the University of Pennsylvania, 25th Annual Conference on 
African Linguistics, and the 5th Formal Linguistics Society of 
Midamerica Conference, particularly to Eric Bakovic, Gene Buckley, 
Jennifer Cole, Charles Kisseberth, Mark Liberman, John McCarthy, 
David Odden, Allan Prince, and Donca Steriade for their questions and 
comments. All errors remain my reponsibility. 

1 6 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

1 Except where indicated, Kalahari examples will be given in the 
standard Kalahari orthography. Within this orthography, i = [i], e = [e], 
o =[o], u = [u], b = [6], d = [cf], r = [f]. Tones are transcribed: ' = high 
tone, ~ = downstepped high tone, unmarked = low tone. 

2 The basic idea of employing alignment constraints for harmony 
was originally proposed by Kirchner (1993). The approach here dif- 
fers from his account in two ways; featural alignment covers not just 
vowel harmony but the alignment of all 'prosodic' features (see 
Akinlabi 1994), and secondly we employ alignment constraints here 
only when the harmonic feature is underlyingly free. We do not 
however rule out the relevance of alignment constraints to cases 
where the feature is not underlyingly free. 

3 This constraint should ideally be split into two constraints 
Align [+ATR] Left and Align [+ATR] Right accounting for the two 
edges. Since there is no evidence that either one is violated here, it 
will suffice to have only one constraint. 

4 Kalahari pronominal clitics vary depending on gender and 
grammatical function, which Jenewari (1989:116) refers to as 
'subject' or 'non-subject'. 

5 Jenewari (1973:65) initially claimed that the past tense suffix 
harmonizes with the verb, taking the forms -mu/mu depending on 
the verb. He however notes in a footnote the same work that the 
suffix is usually pronounced as a syllabic nasal -m. In all subsequent 
works (including those in which he discussed vowel harmony), he 
has transcribed this suffix as -m without the harmony claim. I 
therefore assume that the suffix is indeed a syllabic nasal. 

6 In the preceding section, we pointed out that a rule based 
account of Kanembu faces the arbitrary decision of deciding the 
direction of linking and spreading. David Odden has pointed out that 
a similar arbitrariness exists in a constraints based account such as 
the one proposed here: the choice between having one or two align- 
ment constraints in Kanembu and Kalahari respectively. A solution to 
such a problem is to assume two alignment constraints in all cases. 

'^ Optimal forms in these cases will of course violate some FILL 
constraint. The assumption then is that such a constraint is domi- 
nated by Lex-Feat. 

*^ See Archangeli and Pulleyblank in press for details on ground- 
ing theory. 



Akinlabi: Alignment constraints in ATR harmony 1 7 


Akinlabi, Akinbiyi. 1994. Featural alignment. 25th Annual Confer- 
ence on African Linguistics, Rutgers University. 
ARCHANGELI, Diana & Doug Pulleyblank. 1993. Optimality, grounding 

theory, and rule parameters. Rutgers Optimality Workshop 1. 
& Doug Pulleyblank. in press. Grounded phonology. Cambridge: 

MIT Press. 
ITO, Junko. 1989. A prosodic theory of epenthesis. Natural Language 

and Linguistic Theory 7.217-259. 
, & Armin Mester. 1993. Licensed segments and safe paths. 

Canadian Journal of Linguistics 38.197-214. 
, Armin Mester & Jaye Padgett. 1993. NC. Rutgers Optimality 

Workshop 1. 
Jenewari, C. E. W. 1973. Vowel harmony in Kalahari Ijo. Research 

Notes from the Department of Linguistics and Nigerian Lan- 
guages, University of Ibadan. 6: 59-78. 
. 1980. A linguistic guide to spoken Kalahari. University of Port 

Harcourt, MS. 

1983. Defaka, Ijo's closest linguistic relative. Current 

approaches to African linguistics 1, ed. by Ivan R. Dihoff, 85-111. 

Dordrecht: Foris. 
. 1985. Kalahari orthography. Orthographies of Nigerian 

languages. Manual III, ed. by Ayo Banjo, 83-107. National 

Language Centre, Lagos. 
1989. Ijoid. The Niger Congo languages, ed. by John Bendor- 

Samuel and Rhonda L. Hartell. Lanham: University Press of 

JOUANNET, Francis. 1982. L'accompli et I'inaccompli en Kanembu. The 

Chad languages in the Hamitosemitic-Nigritic border area. 

Marburger Studien zur Afrika und Asienkunde, Serie A: Afrika, 

Band 27, ed. by Herrmann Jungraithmayr. Berlin: Dietrich Reimer 

KiRCHNER, Robert. 1993. Turkish vowel disharmony in optimality the- 
ory. Rutgers Optimality Workshop 1. 
LEE, J. D. & K. Williamson. 1982. A Lexicostatistic classification of Ijo 

dialect. Paper presented at the colloquium on African linguistics, 

McCarthy, John & Alan Prince. 1993a. Prosodic morphology 1: con- 
straint interaction and satisfaction. University of Massachusetts, 

Amherst and Rutgers University. MS. 
& Alan Prince. 1993b. Generalized alignment. University of 

Massachusetts, Amherst and Rutgers University. MS. 
Prince, Alan & Paul Smolensky. 1993. Optimality theory: constraint 

interaction in generative grammar. Technical Report #2, Rutgers 

Center for Cognitive Science. 
Pulleyblank, Doug. 1993. Vowel harmony and optimality theory. 

Workshop Sobre Fonologia, University of Coimbra. 

1 8 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

Roberts, J.S. 1994. Nontonal features as grammatical morphemes. 
25th Annual Conference on African Linguistics, Rutgers Uni- 

Stewart, J. 1971. Niger-Congo, Kwa. Current trends in linguistics. Vol. 
VII, ed. by Thomas Sebeok, 179-212. 

Williamson, Kay. 1969. Ijo. Twelve Nigerian languages, ed. by Eliz- 
abeth Dunstan. New York: Africana Publishing Corporation. 

. 1973. Some reduced vowel harmony systems. Research Notes 

from the Department of Linguistics and Nigerian Languages. 
University of Ibadan. 6:145-169. 

. 1987. Nasality in Ijo. Current approaches to African linguistics 

4, ed. by David Odden, 397-415. Dordrecht: Foris. 

. 1989. Niger-Congo overview. The Niger Congo languages, ed. by 

John Bendor-Samuel and Rhonda L. Kartell, 3-45. Lanham: 
University Press of America. 



Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Andrew Barss 
University of Arizona 

A central goal of the Minimalist program (Chomsky 
1991, 1993; Chomsky & Lasnik 1994; Lasnik 1993) is the 
elimination of S-structure conditions in favor of either rep- 
resentational constraints on LF, or derivational constraints 
applying without reference to specific levels. More gener- 
ally, LF is the only designated level of representation within 
this model, with the levels D-structure and S-structure for- 
mally eliminated. Consequently, any representational syn- 
tactic filter or licensing principle can refer only to LF, if it 
refers to any level at all; let us call this the MINIMALIST 
Representational Thesis. My concern in this article is to 
identify certain problems in the theory of reconstruction 
effects presented by Chomsky 1993 and Lasnik 1993, and 
to offer an alternative account of reconstruction which 
nonetheless satisfies the representational thesis. 

In the decade preceding the development of the minimalist 
system, one of the leading questions in syntax was which constraints 
apply at which level(s) of representation. The general picture 
emerging was that different principles were distributed across 
different levels of representation; this set of results themselves 
justified the postulation of distinct levels of syntactic representation. 
One particular case is the application of the binding principles, those 
constraints of grammar regulating anaphoric dependence between 
argument positions. A number of researchers concluded that these 
principles appear to apply at the level of S-structure. This result 
requires adjustment in the minimalist system, which has no level S- 
structure. The demonstration that the binding principles do not apply 
at D-structure is quite straightforward: movement processes deriving 
S-structure from D-structure feed the binding theory. To take one 
well-known type of example, NP-movement maps the D-structure 
(la) onto the S-structure (lb); in the output representation, the 
anaphor herself is c-commanded by its antecedent Mary, whereas 
prior to movement this was not the case. 

( 1 ) a. seems to herself2 [ to be likely [Maryi to win]] 

b. Mary2 seems to herself2 [e2' to be likely [e2 to win]] 

Were Condition A to apply at D-structure, the sentence would be 
filtered out as ungrammatical, given the lack of c-command of the 
anaphor by its antecedent in (la). Since the sentence is acceptable. 
Condition A does not apply at D-structure. Similar arguments have 
been advanced for Conditions B and C of the binding theory. 

20 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

In addition, it is standard to view NP-trace as an anaphor, with 
its distribution partially dictated by principle A. Given this 
hypothesis', it is obvious that Condition A could not apply solely at D- 
structure, since otherwise Condition A would have no effect on the 
distribution of NP-trace. 

This leaves S-structure, LF, or potentially both levels, as the 
candidate levels of representation at which the binding principles 
apply. Several researchers (Barss 1984, 1986, 1988, Brody 1979, 
Chomsky 1981, 1982) concluded that it is S-structure which consti- 
tutes the level of application of the argument anaphora conditions. 
The arguments developed are largely empirical in nature, since there 
is no a priori reason, within the LGB theory, to decide the question 
one way or another; there is no conceptual argument either way. The 
central body of data relevant to the S-structure vs. LF anaphora 
question involves movement operations which change the position of 
an NP between S-structure and LF (derivations in which there is no 
such change of position are obviously incapable of illuminating the 
question of which level is relevant to the binding theory). Because of 
the nature of the relevant data, and the fact that LF syntactic repre- 
sentations are (by definition) hidden from anything resembling 
direct observation, the resolution of this question requires establish- 
ing assumptions about the exact syntax of LF, and the movement op- 
erations deriving LF from S-structure. I shall assume here, until 
section 1.3, the standard view that LF is derived from S-structure by 
(i) WH-movement of in-situ WH-expressions to [-I-WH] Spec-C, and (ii) 
scope assignment of quantified NPs by adjunction to non-argument 
projections. In this I follow the foundational studies of Chomsky 
1976, 1981, Higginbotham 1980, 1983, 1985, and Higginbotham and 
May 1981, Huang 1982, and May 1977, 1985. The alternative 
conception of LF movement operations outlined by Chomsky 1993 
and Lasnik 1993 will be taken up in section 2. 

The general schema of the data at hand are derivational pairs of 
the sort in (2) and (3), where a, (3, are argument NPs related by an 
anaphoric dependency, k contains p, a c-commands p in the input 
representations ((2a, 3a)), and overt or covert movement either 
raises n to a position outside the c-command domain of a (as in (2b)) 
or to a position more locally c-commanded by a (as in (3b)). The (a) 
examples may be taken as D-structure representations, with overt 
movement yielding the (b) examples as S-structures; or the (a) 
examples may be taken as S-structures, with covert movement 
yielding (b) as the associated LF structures. 

(2) a. [z... [[Npa]i[... L-[NPp]i ...]2...]] 

b. [!...[;,... [[npPIi ...]... [[NpaJi [...e....]] 

(3) a. h ... [[np a], [... [NP2 [... [, ... [np Pli ...h -..]]] 

b. b ... [[np all [... [n ... [[np P]i ...] ... [NP2 ... [... 62 ...]] 

Barss: Derivations and Reconstruction 2 1 

The issue of which level of representation is relevant to the 
binding theory would seem to be settled simply by examining a suf- 
ficient range of such cases. However, all this depends on the specific 
assumption that particular movement processes apply in the LF 
component, a controversial topic. In the remainder of this section I 
will review both some central cases specifically instantiating deriva- 
tions of the sort in (2) and (3), and the analyses of the general effect. 
As has been established in previous work, a near paradox arises, 
where, particularly in the case of anaphor binding, there seems to be 
a free choice as to which of the (a, b) structures above is the locus of 
application of the binding principles, if they are associated by overt 
(pre-SPELLOUT) movement. Resolving this dilemma is at the core of 
the reconstruction problem. 

The "reconstruction problem" is actually a class of problems in 
the theory of anaphora, each showing an interaction between move- 
ment of a phrase k and possibilities for anaphoric construal of an 
element within k to an antecedent. Perhaps the most familiar case is 
that occurring with moved [+WH] arguments, illustrated in (4)-(5): 

(4) a. John wonders which pictures of himself Max said Sam saw 

where yesterday, 
b. John wonders where Max said Sam saw which pictures of 
himself yesterday. 

(5) a. Which book that John read did he give to which woman? 
b. To which woman did he give which book that John read? 

Descriptively, the anaphor in (4a) may be anaphorically con- 
strued with any of the three names, while in (4b) only Sam is a licit 
antecedent. In (5a), John may be construed as the antecedent of the 
pronoun, while this construal is strongly blocked in (5b). 

Three problems are exhibited in (4-5). First, construing either 
Max or Sam as the antecedent of the reflexive in (4a), the puzzle is 
why the antecedent apparently need not c-command the anaphor, as 
is usually required (the C-COMMAND PROBLEM). Second, the poten- 
tial antecedents in (4a) are arguments of three distinct tensed 
clauses, at least superficially violating the locality requirement of 
English anaphors (the LOCALITY PROBLEM). I will refer below to this 
pair of problems — which typically go together — as the MULTIPLE 
ANTECEDENT EFFECT. And, finally, there is an apparent S-struc- 
ture/LF asymmetry. On the classic assumption (defended in detail by 
Chomsky 1976, Huang 1982, Higginbotham 1983, 1985, 1993; May 
1985) that in-situ WH phrases raise to Spec-CP in the LF component. 
(4a, b) will receive the LFs (6a, b): 

(6) a. John wonders where which pictures of himself Max said 

Sam saw yesterday, 
b. John wonders which pictures of himself where Max said 
Sam saw yesterday. 

22 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

These LFs are nearly isomorphic, differing only in the local ad- 
junction structure for the two WH-phrases. In both cases, the 
anaphor occupies roughly the same position, locally c-commanded by 
John and contained within a constituent which binds traces that are 
locally c-commanded by Max and Sam. The puzzle is why LF move- 
ment cannot increase binding domains (which would allow John or 
Max to antecede the anaphor in (4b/6b)), while overt movement (as 
in (4a/6a)) can. Let us refer to this as the LEVELS PROBLEM). 

Turning to condition C effects, the levels problem arises as well. 
In (5a), overt movement has moved the name to a position outside 
the c-command domain of the pronoun, and coreference anaphora is 
possible between the pair {John, he). In (5b), where the name is c- 
commanded at S-structure by the pronoun, but will be moved out- 
side the c-command domain of the pronoun by LF WH-movement, it 
is apparently the S-structure relationship between the two NPs 
which matters, blocking anaphora in this example. Were condition C 
to apply only at LF, it would seemingly not block anaphora in (5b), 
since the associated LF is (7), again assuming phrasal WH-movement 
in the LF component: 

(7) [cp [which book that John read]i [to which woman]2 did he give 
ei e2]? 

Although there are numerous other reconstruction effects, I will 
concentrate principally on the multiple-antecedent effect and the 
levels problem here. Exploring them illuminates both the general 
way we should view the interaction of movement and binding, and 
general issues concerning the syntactic form and derivation of LF. 

1 . Previous analyses 

1.1. S-structure filtering 

Essentially three classes of analyses have been presented to account 
for these reconstruction effects. On the first analysis, binding 
principles are taken to apply at S-structure. The overt/covert move- 
ment asymmetry immediately follows (essentially by stipulation): 
Conditions A and C will apply to the S-structure representations in 
(4) and (5), forcing the choice of Max as the anaphor's antecedent in 
(4b), and allowing coreference in (5a) but blocking it in (5b). The odd 
case is the multiple-antecedent effect in (4a). The most extensive 
theory of this effect is presented by Barss 1986, 1988, building on 
insights of Cinque 1982. The core of this account is to replace c-com- 
mand by a more complex geometric relation, one which makes cru- 
cial reference to chains. Essentially, the formulation of Condition A is 
as in (8): 

(8) CONDITION A: an anaphor must be coindexed with a locally 
accessible antecedent at S-structure. 

(9) A BINDING PATH P for X is an ordered sequence of nodes <Ni, ..., 
Nn> such that: 

Barss: Derivations and Reconstruction 2 3 

i) N| immediately dominates X; 

ii) for all Nj in P, i < n, either Nj+i immediately dominates Nj, or 

there is a chain C such that N\+\ and Nj are members of C. 
iii) Nn is the root node of a complete functional complex. 

(10) Y is ACCESSIBLE to X iff there exists a binding path P for X such 
that some node in P is a sister to Y. 

(11) Y is LOCALLY ACCESSIBLE to X iff, for some binding path P for X: 
i) Y is accessible to X through P, and 

ii) there is no Z accessible to X through a path P' which is a 
proper subsequence of P. 

(9) and (10) together replace c-command in the application of 
Condition A, and (11) limits the class of antecedents to those which 
are local to the anaphor in the sense defined. 

In (4a), the existence of the chain (WH, e', e) gives rise to several 
distinct binding paths, given in (12). 2 

(4a) [ipa Johni [y^ [ypa wondcrs [cp [np which [n' pictures [pp of 

himself|/2/3]]]]4 [iPb Maxo [ph [vpb said [cp e4' [ipc Sam3 [pc [vpc saw 
e4 where yesterday]]]]]]]]]]] 

(12) a. Path] = <PP, N', NP4, VPa, I'a, IPa> 

b. Path2 = <PP, N', NP4, VPb, I'b, IPb> 

c. Paths = <PP. N', NP4, VPc, I'c, IPc> 

Each of John, Max, and Sam in (4a) is accessible to the anaphor 
through a different path. John is accessible through Pathi since it is a 
sister to I'a; Max and Sam are accessible to the anaphor through 
Path2 and Pathi respectively. Since none of the paths properly con- 
tains the other, and since no other antecedent is accessible to the 
anaphor, all three are licit candidates. As a consequence, the three- 
way ambiguity of binding here is accounted for, as is the lack of 
ambiguity in the minimally distinct (13): 

(13) [ipa Johni [pa [vPa wonders [cp [np whosse [n- pictures [pp of 
himself5/*i/*2/*3]]]]4 [iPb Max2 [pb [vpb said [cp e4' [ipc Sams [pc [vPc 
saw e4 where yesterday]]]]]]]]]]] 

(14) a. Path, = <PP. N', NP4, VPa, I'a, IPa> 

b. Path2 = <PP, N', NP4, VPb, I'b, IPb> 

c. Paths = <PP, N', NP4, VPc I'c, IPc> 

d. Path4 = <PP, N', NP4> 

In this case, who(se)5 is accessible to himself through Path4. 
Since Path4 is a proper subpath of Paths 1, 2, and 3, none of John, 
Max, or Sam is locally accessible to the anaphor, explaining the lack 
of ambiguity in such cases. 

This theory allows the anaphor-antecedent relation to be for- 
mally captured with respect to S-structure representations, consis- 
tent with the apparent S-structurc application of the binding 
constraints reviewed above. 

24 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

While this theory formally captures the multiple-antecedent 
effect, it does so at considerable theoretical cost: c-command is such a 
simpler and more natural relation than path accessibility that clearly 
something is being missed. Further, this theory must stipulate that 
the binding principles (including (8)) apply at S-structure. This stipu- 
lation is seemingly underivable, and is also obviously in conflict with 
the minimalist thesis on levels. 

To note a final problem with this approach to reconstruction, 
observe that pronoun-name relations cannot be subject to the acces- 
sibility relation, since coreference is permitted in (5a). Were 
Condition C to work in a fashion parallel to Condition A, it would have 
a formulation essentially as in (15): 

(15) An R-expression a cannot be coindexed with an NP which is 
accessible to a at S-structure. 

However, in (5a), the pronoun is accessible to the name through 
the path given in (16), incorrectly ruling the sentence ungrammatical 
with coreference. 

(5a) [cpa [np which [n' book [cpb that [ipb John read ]]]]4 did [iPa he [la 
[vpa give e4 to which woman]]]]? 

(16) binding path for John = <IPb, CPb, N', NP4, e4, VPa, I'a, IPa> 

Consequently, Condition C, under Barss' theory, must keep to its 
original formulation expressed in terms of c-command: 

(17) An R-expression a must not be coindexed with an NP which 
c-commands a at S-structure. 

This is a puzzling asymmetry between Conditions A and C: why 
should Condition A be sensitive to the path-theoretic relation of path 
accessibility, while Condition C is not? Given the complexities of this 
theory, an alternative is desirable. 

1.2 Cyclic Binding 

The second type of approach to these problems is to take the binding 
principles to apply cyclically, as suggested by Belletti and Rizzi 1988, 
Jackendoff 1972, and Jacobson & Neubauer 1976. Continuing to 
assume that the levels problem indicates that the binding conditions 
cannot apply in the LF component. Condition A would have the form 

(18) on this view: 

(18) Condition A: an anaphor must be coindexed with a locally 
c-commanding NP at some derivational stage prior to SPELLOUT. 

Focusing our attention first on the anaphor binding examples in 
(4), the multiple-antecedent effect is easily captured, without 
stipulation. Consider a derivation of (4a) as in (19): 

(19) a. [iPa Johni [pa [vPa wonders [cp [iPb Max2 [ib [vpb said [cp [iPc 

Sam3 [pc [vPc saw [np which [n- pictures [pp of himself|/2/3]]]]4 
where yesterday]]]]]]]]]]] 

Barss: Derivations and Reconstruction 2 5 

b. [ipa John] [I'a [vpa wonders [cp [np [iPb Max2 [ib [vpb said [cp [np 
which [n' pictures [pp of himself|/2/3]]]]4 [iPc Sam3 [i^ [vpc saw 
64 where yesterday]]]]]]]]]]] 

c. [iPa Johni [I'a [vPa wonders [cp [np which [n' pictures [pp of 
himselfi/2/3]]]]4 [iPb Max2 [pb [vPb said [cp e4' [iPc Sam3 [pc [vPc 
saw 64 where yesterday]]]]]]]]]]] 

The anaphor-containing WH-phrase moves successive-cyclically 
through each clause, and at any point in the pre-SPELLOUT deriva- 
tion, the anaphor may be licensed. Depending on which point in the 
derivation is chosen, any of the NPs may be licensed as antecedent, 
since each locally c-commands the anaphor at one point or another in 
the movement derivation. This type of analysis avoids the geometric 
complexities of the purely S-structure approach to binding discussed 
above; c-command under its original, simple formulation needs no 
amendment under the cyclic theory. 

However, the cyclic approach has at least two weaknesses. First, 
it must again be stipulated that both Condition A and Condition C 
apply prior to SPELLOUT, i.e. no later than S-structure; without this 
stipulation, the illicit construals of (4b) and (5b) would incorrectly be 
licensed. Second, the ameliorating effects of overt movement on 
Condition C effects (as in (5)) is somewhat problematic: if the binding 
conditions apply cyclically, why doesn't Condition C filter out (5a) at 
an early point in the derivation (prior to WH-movement), where the 
pronoun c-commands the name? 

This latter problem is rather easily resolved, if we suppose that 
Condition C need only be satisfied at one point in the derivation (in 
this case, it will be satisfied after overt preposing of the WH-phrase), 
as encoded in (20). 

(20) CONDITION C: An R-expression must be free at some point in 

the pre-SPELLOUT derivation. 

Assuming a derivation like (21) for (5a), Condition C would be 
satisfied at the later stage, after WH-movement has removed the 
name from the c-command domain of the pronoun. 

(21) a. [cp [ip hei give [np which book that John] read]2 to which 

b. [cp [np which book that Johni read]2 [ip hei give e2 to which 

Nonetheless the levels problem remains. In section 3 I will argue 
that the central insight of the cyclic theory of binding is correct, and 
I will offer a constrained view of this analysis which addresses the 
levels problem just noted. Before presenting this analysis, I will 
review the third and final type of approach to the reconstruction 
problems, namely the minimalist theory of reconstruction proposed 
by Chomsky 1993 and Lasnik 1993, and note several drawbacks of 
this currently popular view of reconstruction. 

2 6 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

1.3 LF Filtering 

The third approach to these reconstruction effects is to postulate a 
sharp distinction between overt and covert movement, essentially 
giving up the symmetric theory of pre- and post-S-structure move- 
ment presented by Fiengo, Huang, Lasnik & Reinhart 1988, 
Higginbotham 1981, 1983, 1985, Huang 1982, May 1985, and 
assumed in much research in the standard GB model, under which 
in-situ WH-phrases are moved to appropriate A' scope positions in 
the LF component. The alternative view is simply that phrasal scope 
assignment processes do not exist in the covert component. An early 
version of this alternative is presented by Hornstein & Weinberg 
1988, and is developed in considerable detail by Chomsky 1993 and 
Lasnik 1993. 

Under this theory, LF scope assignment is done, not by moving 
the entire operator phrase (a WH-phrase or quantified NP) to scope 
position, but by only moving the interrogative or quantificational 
determiner. To illustrate, the LF representations associated with (4b, 
5b) would be (22) and (23)3; 

(22) John wonders [cp [d which]4 [pp where]2 Max said Sam saw [np £4 
pictures of himselfJs e2 yesterday]. 

(23) [cp [d which]4 [pp to which woman] did [jp he give [np 64 book 
that John read]]]? 

Let us refer to this hypothesis as the Determiner Movement 
(DM) theory of scope assignment. Under DM, the positions occupied 
by the anaphor in (4b) and the name in (5b) are unaffected by LF 
movement, since only the determiner moves. As a result, the appar- 
ent (pre-) S-structure application of the binding principles is illusory; 
the binding principles may apply solely at LF. By adopting this stipu- 
lated difference between overt and covert movement — by blocking 
any type of phrasal A' extraction at LF — the covert/overt asymmetry 
in binding is captured. But, of course, this movement difference 
remains a stipulation unless it can be derived from independent 

Turning to the multiple-antecedent effect with overt WH- 
movement seen in (4a), Chomsky 1993 treats movement as a copying 
operation, so that the full pre-SPELLOUT representation is actually 

(24) [iPa John] [I'a [vpa wondcrs [cp [np which [n' pictures [pp of 
himself|/2/3]]]]4 [iPb Max2 [pb [ypb said [cp which [n' pictures [pp of 
himselfi/2/3]]]]4 [ipc Sam3 [pc [ypc saw which [n' pictures [pp of 
himselfi/2/3]]]]4 where yesterday]]]]]]]]]]] 

The traces of movement are unpronounced copies of the WH- 
phrase. The redundancy in the representation is eliminated prior to 
LF by deleting all copies of which other than the one in scope posi- 
tion, and by deleting all but one copy of pictures of himself. The 

Barss: Derivations and Reconstruction 2 7 

latter operation is free, and can selectively retain any of the three 
copies, giving (25a-c) as licit LF structures: 

(25) a. [ipa Johni [^a [vpa wonders [cp wheres [d which]4 [n? e4 [n' 

pictures [pp of himself]]] ]]4 [ipb Max2 [ib [vpb said [cp [ipc Sams 
[re [vpc saw 6465 yesterday]]]]]]]]]]] 

b. [ipa John] [pa [vpa wonders [cp wherej [d which]4 [ipb Max2 [pb 
[vpb said [cp [np 64 [n' pictures [pp of himself2]]]]4 [ipc Sams [ic 
[vpc saw e4 es yesterday]]]]]]]]]]] 

c. [ipa John] [pa [vPa wonders [cp wheres [d which]4 [ipb Max2 [pb 
[vpb said [cp [ipc Sams [ic [vPc saw [np e4 [n' pictures [pp of 
himself3]]]]4e5 yesterday]]]]]]]]]]] 

Each LF structure satisfies Condition A with the reflexive 
indexed as indicated. "Reconstruction" then amounts to retention of a 
lower copy, and deletion of the pronounced, highest copy. 

Finally, with respect to the suspension of Condition C under 
overt WH-movement, as in (5a), Chomsky assumes (following 
Lebeaux 1988) that relative clauses can be introduced into the rep- 
resentation at any point in the pre-SPELLOUT derivation, and so (5a) 
has a derivation on which the relative clause is introduced after WH- 
movement of which picture to Spec-C. As a result, the S-structure 
representation is (26): 

(26) [cp [which2 book [cp that Johnj read]]2 did hei give [which2 
book]2 to [whichs woman]3? 

Because there is no lower copy of the relative clause in (26), 
there is no reconstruction of any portion of which book that John 
read. The LF will be derived solely by movement of the in-situ 
which, and deletion of the lower copy of which book: 

(27) [cp [which]3 [which2 book [cp that Johni read]]2 did hc] give e2 to 
[es woman]3? 

Since at LF the name is still outside the c-command domain of 
he, coindexing, and thus coreference, is permitted. 

This analysis relies on two LF operations which differ from those 
assumed in previous studies of LF syntax: 

(28) LF scope assignment : move a determiner to scope position. 

(29) LF reconstruction: 

(i) if overt movement creates multiple copies of a phrase, 
delete, if at all possible, the copy occurring in the highest 
position, and all but one of the lower copies. 

(ii) If it is not possible to delete the highest copy, retain it, and 
delete all lower copies. 

As illustrated above, (29ii) will retain the highest (scope- 
marking) copy of the determiner, and (29i) will typically apply to 
delete the pied-piped material from an extracted WH-phrase (all 

2 8 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

material other than the determiner itself). The end effect (setting 
aside cases like (26) where a modifier is inserted into a previously 
extracted WH-phrase) of (28) and (28) is to give rise to LF structures 
of the general format (30), where ,[3 forms the scope of the extracted 
determiner a: 

(30) [Det a ]i [p ... [np ei N' ] ...] 

As we noted above, this minimalist treatment of reconstruction 
rests on the stipulation that LF scope-driven movement cannot be 
phrasal, but instead moves only bare interrogative and quantifica- 
tional determiners. 

Chomsky 1993 and Lasnik 1993 defend the view that this limi- 
tation on LF movement is indeed a derivable stipulation. They 
endorse a view under which the unmarked syntax for quantification 
and interrogation is schematically that in (30), where the scopal 
determiner is a sister to its scope domain, and the "residue" con- 
stituent — the phrase in which the determiner originates — remains 
inside the scope domain. They encode this view as an optimality 
constraint on LF syntax: 

(31) Minimize the content of operator positions. 

This theory keeps to the view that scope is syntactically encoded 
at LF, but sharply departs from previous work on the syntax of LF in 
assigning scope only to the determiner portion of an operator. (31) is 
the motivating force behind (29) and (30). 

By (31), the LFs (32) and (33) count as more optimal than the 
LFs in (34) and (35), since in the former pair the operator position 
(Spec-C or IP-adjunction) contains less material than in (34, 35): 

(32) John wonders [which4 wheres [Max said Sam saw [e4 pictures of 
himself] es yesterday 

(33) [which4 whichs [did he give [e4 book that John read] [to es 

(34) John wonders [which pictures of himself]4 wheres Max said Sam 
saw e4 es yesterday 

(35) [[which book that John read]4 [to which woman]5 [did he give e4 

That is, the LFs (34/35) which would give rise to the illicit 
anaphoric construals for (4b, 5b) violate (31). Hence, these anaphoric 
construals are blocked, and the levels problem is explained away. 

What lifts (31) above the level of a raw stipulation is that it fits 
in with the general minimalist view that all aspects of syntactic rep- 
resentation conform to a simplicity criterion: an LF structure, and the 
derivation creating it, must be the minimally complex one capable of 
expressing the same message, and licensing the same array of lexical 
items. Consequently, one might suppose that (31) itself derives from 
this minimalist consideration; if two LFs assign the same scope to the 
same operator, then the one in which the least lexical material is 

Barss: Derivations and Reconstruction 29 

involved in scope assignment is optimal. However, this argument is 

less convincing once we consider what it is for an LF representation 

to encode quantification or interrogation, and how it is that LF 

structures are mapped to appropriate interpretations. We will show 

in the next section that any theory of LF scope assignment which 

assumes (30) to be the regular syntactic expression of scope requires 

U brute-force rules for interpreting quantifiers and interrogatives, and 

r thus is at variance with the long-standing view that LF encodes the 

I syntactic contribution to meaning. We will further show that the 

phenomenon of antecedent-contained deletion is quite problematic in 

a theory adopting (30). 

2 . Two Problems for DM 

2.1 Logical Interpretation 

The first problem arising under the theory sketched in the section 
above is essentially one of interpretation. It has been widely 
assumed since LF was introduced by Chomsky 1976 and May 1977 
that its central function is to be the sole syntactic input to semantic 
interpretation. This view is retained explicitly in the minimalist 

Natural language quantifiers are binary, in the sense that they 
combine with two formulae, each formula containing a variable 
bound to the determiner. Each formula denotes a set, and truth val- 
ues are assigned to sentences expressing quantification as a function 
of the relationship between the two sets. We may view the quantifi- 
cational determiner as either a function from ordered pairs of sets to 
truth values, or as functions from sets to functions from sets to truth 
values. 4 For example, 'every' is interpreted via the schema (36), so 
that (37) is true just in case the (relevant) set of books is a subset of 
the set of things with covers: 

(36) EVERYXY= 1 iffXcY 

(37) Every book has a cover. 

Similarly, 'most' is interpreted via (38), so (39) is true just in case the 
members of the greater part of the set of famous movie actors are 
also members of the set of things John has met: 

(38) MOST X Y= 1 iff IXnYl > IX-YI 

i (39) John has met most famous movie actors. 

The exact relation between the two sets varies from determiner 
to determiner, as a matter of lexical meaning (see Higginbotham and 
May 1981, May 1985 for discussion). 

Granting the binary nature of natural language quantification, it 
is central to any theory of the syntax-semantics mapping that the 
three semantic constituents necessary to interpret quantification 
— the determiner itself, and the two set-denoting expressions — be 
identifiable in the syntax. 

30 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

Under the classic theory of LF, in which the constituents moved 
to scope position are phrasal, the recovery of semantic constituency 
is straightforward, a point pressed by Higginbotham and May 1981, 
Higginbotham 1983, 1993, May 1985, and Neale 1990. The LF 
assigned to (39) is (40): 

(40) [ip [np most [n' famous movie actors]]] [ip John has met ei]] 

Here the determiner, its N' sister, and the IP containing the trace 
of QR, are separated syntactically. Semantically, each matches up to 
one constituent of logical interpretation: N' to the first argument of 
the determiner, IP to the second argument, and the determiner to its 
lexical meaning. 

However, under the minimalist theory of scope involving the 
alternative rule (28), the LF will be as in (41), with the determiner 
extracted on its own:^ 

(41) mostj [ip John has met [np cj [n' famous movie actors]]]]] 

The problem is that it is not at all clear how (41) aligns with 
(38). There seems no way around the fact that the two sets in ques- 
tion are (i) the set of famous movie actors and (ii) the set of things 
that John has met. But the syntactic phrases which denote these two 
sets are not separated — one (the N-projection) is embedded inside the 
other. Clearly, the denotation of IP in (41) has to be this pair of sets, 
and the mechanism for establishing this denotation would seem to 
have to take essentially the form (42). 

(42) In a structure of the form 

[oetttli [p -[Npei N']...] 

(a) interpret [np ej N'] as the first argument of a; 

(b) substitute a variable bound to a into the position occupied by 
[np Ci N'] in |3, to yield [i'; and 

(c) interpret (3' as the second argument of a. 

(42) is clearly cumbersome, and lacks the transparency of interpre- 
tation afforded under the classic view of LF. This is the first technical 
drawback of the DE theory of scope. 

2.2 Antecedent-Contained Deletion 

The second problem with the DE theory of scope assignment is its 
incompatibility with observations of Sag 1976 concerning the 
interaction of quantifier scope and antecedent-contained deletion. 
Sag observes that (43) is exactly three-ways ambiguous, and cru- 
cially lacks a fourth reading on which the embedded QNP has narrow 
(de dicto) scope with respect to want and the antecedent of the 
ellipsis is understood to be the matrix VP. This reading surfaces 
when no ellipsis is present, as in (44): 

(43) Sam wants Sally to visit [every city that Oscar does ]i. 

a. Sam wants [for all cities x such that Oscar visits x] [Sally to 
visit x]. 

Barss: Derivations and Reconstruction 31 

b. [for all cities x such that Oscar visits x] Sam wants [Sally to 
visit x]. 

c. [for all cities x such that Oscar wants Sally to visit x] Sam 
wants [Sally to visit x] 

d. # Sam wants [for all cities x such that Oscar wants Sally to 

visit x] [Sally to visit x] 

(44) Sam wants Sally to visit every city that Oscar wants her to visit. 
a. [for all cities x such that Oscar wants Sally to visit x] Sam 

wants [Sally to visit x] 
d. Sam wants [for all cities x such that Oscar wants Sally to visit 
x] [Sally to visit x] 

The dependency of ellipsis scope on the scope of the containing 
QNP has a natural explanation within QR theory, as is argued by 
Larson & May 1990, May 1985, and Fiengo & May 1994. Assuming 
that the ellipsis site is reconstructed^ under syntactic identity with 
its antecedent, the illicit reading (43d) could not arise, since the 
antecedent (matrix) VP still contains the ellipsis. Hence, as the 
authors cited argue, ellipsis scope can be no wider than the scope of 
the QNP. 

Within theories of LF lacking long-distance QR, wide-scope ellip- 
sis resolution (as in (43c)) must be effected by relaxing the identity 
condition. One such approach is developed by Brody 1993, who pre- 
sents a theory of ellipsis essentially as in (45), where R is the mate- 
rial copied under partial identity into an ellipsis site: 

(45) Structure R is a licit reconstruction of antecedent A only if every 
constituent of R either: 

(i) has an identical correspondent in A, or 

(ii) is a variable having a coindexed correspondent in A. 

Applied to (43), (45) can target the matrix VP and reconstruct the 
ellipsis as (46): 

(46) Sam wants Sally to visit [every city that Oscar wants Sally to 
visit ei]i. 

The ellipsis is resolved, eliminating the antecedent-containment 
problem. However, a problem arises: the reconstructed LF represen- 
tation is now identical to (44), and so there is no longer an explana- 
tion for why the QNP must take wide (de re) scope if the ellipsis is 
resolved this way. If quantifier scope is determined solely by 
determiner movement, we must adopt something like (45), but we 
cannot explain Sag's generalization. 

Consider a compromise position. Suppose we abandon (45), and 
grant that ellipsis forces phrasal movement of the ellipsis-containing 
NP outside the antecedent VP. But suppose we limit QR to just this 
case, and continue to adopt the minimalist proposal that in all other 
cases scope is assigned by bare determiner extraction. This makes a 
prediction that an anaphor inside an NP which also contains an ellip- 

32 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

sis site can be construed long-distance with respect to its surface 
position. This prediction is apparently wrong, as the judgments on 
cases like (47) and (48) show. 

(47) Sam wants the students to remember every fact about 
themselves that Oscar does. 

(48) ?* The studentsi want Sam to remember every fact about 
themselves] that Oscar does. 

(47) is essentially perfect, (48) has the status of a Condition A viola- 
tion. This is the opposite of what is predicted under the compromise 
theory just outlined. (47) and (48) will have the LFs (49) and (50), 
respectively. In (49), the anaphor is outside the c-command domain 
of the students^ while in (50) the anaphor is locally c-commanded by 
this NP. 

(49) (LF) Sam [vp [every fact about themselvesi that Oscar wants 

the students 1 to remember ez]! [vp wants the 
students] to remember e2] 

(50) (LF) The students] [vp [every fact about themselves] that 

Oscar wants Sam to remember ^2 li [vp want Sam to 
remember 02] 

Were the binding theory to apply to these LF representations, 
the opposite judgments would arise. 

Given the problems just noted for the minimalist theory of 
binding (with or without the retention of phrasal QR for ellipsis reso- 
lution), an alternative is warranted. It is important to note that all 
the problems discussed above stem from the DM hypothesis on scope 
assignment; and the sole motivation for DM is the placement of the 
binding conditions at LF, avoiding the need for reference to S-struc- 
ture. If we can find a different way to account for the reconstruction 
effects, the DM hypothesis can be eliminated, along with its attendant 

3 Cyclicity Revisited 

Both the S-structure and LF (minimalist) theories of binding 
encounter non-trivial technical problems, leaving the cyclic theory of 
binding as the remaining possibility. We noted in 1.2 that this 
approach has one central weakness, in that it must stipulate that the 
binding principles apply no later than S-structure, to account for 
cases like (4) and (5). What I suggest is that we can eliminate any 
reference to S-structure from the cyclic anaphora conditions, by 
adapting the Earliness Principle (EP) of Pesetsky 1989. The core 
notion of the EP is that filters must be satisfied as early as possible in 
the syntactic derivation. For a potential anaphoric dependency 
between two NPs a and p, the earliest point where that dependency 
could be filtered is the point at which they are both present in the 
representation. I assume, with Evans 1980, Fiengo and May 1994, 
Higginbotham 1983, 1985, that anaphoric dependencies are them- 

Barss: Derivations and Reconstruction 33 

selves formal objects of grammar. For cases where a is anaphorically 
dependent on p, I will write D(a, (3). The EP, specifically encoded for 
the anaphora conditions, is given in (51); the anaphora conditions 
themselves take the form (52), (53): 

(51) Optimality Condition on Dependencies (OCD): 

(a) For an LF X encoding the dependency D, = D<(x, P>, Dj must be 
formed at the first stage in the derivation of Z in which a 
and P are constituents of the same phrase marker. 

(b) Filter dependencies immediately upon formation. 

(52) For a dependency D(a, P), where a is an anaphor, p must locally 
c-command a. 

(53) For a dependency D(a, P), where P is an R-expression, a cannot 
c-command p. 

The OCD makes reference to S-structure unnecessary. Consider 
first the pair (4b), (6b), repeated here, with indexing indicating the 
unavailable construal of the reflexive: 

(54) (=4b) Johni wonders [cp wheres Max said Sam saw [which 

pictures of himselfi]2 65 yesterday]. 

(55) (=6b) Johni wonders [cp [which pictures of himselfiJo wheres 

Max said Sam saw ej 65 yesterday]. 

By the OCD, the dependency (John, himself) must be formed at 
(or no later than) the derivational stage (54); it cannot be deferred to 
the later stage (55), since doing so would violate Earliness. The 
dependency is filtered (by (52)) immediately, and the structure is 
ruled out. In general, since the covert derivation is closed to lexical 
insertion (Chomsky 1993, Chomsky & Lasnik 1994), anaphoric 
dependencies between arguments can never be formed as late as LF, 
since there will always be an earlier point at which they could have 
been formed. 

Exactly the same property of the derivation blocks coreference 
in (5b/7). (5b) is derivationally prior to (7); the dependency hence 
must be formed at point (5b), and the sentence violates Condition C 
at this point. In this way, we eliminate any reference to "S-structure" 
from the binding conditions; the overt structure simply represents an 
earlier derivational point than the LF structure constitutes. 

Turning now to the other phenomena exhibited in (4) and (5), 
the OCD appears too restrictive, in that it would seemingly rule out 
the dependency D(he, John) in (5a) (as noted earlier), and block 
D(himself, John) and D(himself, Max) in (4a), assuming a standard 
movement derivation for the examples. In both cases, if the WH- 
phrase originates in argument position, those three dependencies 
would be formed at an early point where they would be ruled 
ungrammatical by the binding conditions. 

34 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

However, this problem is illusory, if we take advantage of the 
particular model of the lexicon-to-LF derivation proposed by 
Chomsky 1993. Under that model, the various syntactic constituents 
ultimately comprising a single LF representation are built up 
separately, merged together by the general cyclic operation GT. 

Now consider the three construals of the reflexive in (4a). For 
the dependency D(himself, Sam), the derivation works as in the stan- 
dard model, with the WH-phrase originating in argument position, 
and the dependency formed on the lowest cycle. For the dependency 
(himself. Max), the WH-phrase will have to be composed separately, 
and then inserted into the main tree on the intermediate cycle. That 
is, the derivation will include the stages in (56) (with material to the 
left and right of ';' indicating separate representations not yet 
combined by GT): 

(56) a.... 

b. [which pictures of himselfsJi ; [c [ip Sam saw 62 wheres 

c. [cp [which pictures of himself3]2 [c [iP Sam saw e2 
wheres yesterday]]] 

d. [v said [cp [which pictures of himself2]2 [c [iP Sam saw 
e2 wheres yesterday]]]] 

e. [vp Max3 [y said [cp [which pictures of himself3]2 [c [ip 
Sam saw 62 wheres yesterday]]]]] 

If we permit such introduction of WH into A' positions (the un- 
marked assumption, given GT), this derivation will now permit the 
licit dependency D(himself, Max). The first point at which the depen- 
dency can be formed is (56e); the OCD forces the dependency to be 
formed at this point, and it (at this stage) satisfies Condition A. 
Further steps in the derivation add the additional material of the 
matrix clause, and move the WH to its surface position. 

An entirely distinct derivation would give rise to the final 
dependency, with the anaphor bound to John^ namely one in which 
the WH-phrase is inserted directly into its surface position, and is 
indeed not moved at all. 

This treatment of the multiple-antecedent effect requires a 
nonstandard view of A' chain formation, but is otherwise exactly 
what we would expect under the specific theory of derivations pre- 
sented by Chomsky 1993. The one additional mechanism needed is to 
suppose that A' chains can be formed in two distinct ways: under 
movement, and "representationally", without movement. I assume 
here, following Barss 1984, 1986, Cinque 1990, Rizzi 1986, and 
Chomsky 1982, 1986a, that this latter option for chain formation is 
available. It would appear in fact that this is the most general, and 
hence preferable, theory of chain formation — if chains are formed 
only under movement, we need to stipulate this constraint, while on 
the view taken here no such stipulation is needed. Chains are simply 
formed up, and filtered by independent principles. In all cases 

Barss: Derivations and Reconstruction 35 

(under the three derivations sketched here for (4a)), the chain (WH, 
e', e) will be formed, and so from the standpoint of chain structure 
they are indistinct. From the standpoint of licensing anaphora, they 
are distinct, advantageously so. 

Finally, the apparent Condition C problem exhibited in (5a) has a 
natural account of the same sort. One derivation of (5a) will involve 
composing the entire WH-phrase separately from the matrix IP, and 
combining them together as the last overt derivational step: 

(57) a.... 

b. [which book that John] read]? ; [c [c +WH] [ip hei give e2 
to which woman]] 

c. [cp [which book that John] read]2 [c [c +WH] [ip hei give 
e? to which woman]]] 

(57c) is the first point in the derivation where both he and John 
are constituents of the same phrase marker; thus it is the first point 
where D(he, John) can be formed, following (51). When the depen- 
dency is formed, it is filtered by Condition C, and this condition is 
satisfied, since the pronoun does not c-command its antecedent. 

4 Conclusion 

In this brief essay I have sketched components of a theory of cyclic 
anaphora. The approach outlined here, I believe, combines the best 
aspects of the theory of syntactic derivations and LF representations 
within the classical, pre-Minimalist theory, and those within the 
Minimalist theory. Like the approach to reconstruction presented by 
Chomsky 1993 and Lasnik 1993, the approach advocated here 
eschews any explicit reference to S-structure, and thus is fully con- 
sistent with the minimalist thesis on levels of representation. 
Moreover, we have eliminated several problems inherent in the LF- 
only theory of binding, particularly its commitment to an unwieldy 
theory of scope and ellipsis resolution. It should be noted that the 
theory I have developed here is not only consistent with the main 
technical and conceptual components of the minimalist system, it is 
critically dependent on them. Particularly, the notion that the 
derivation is structure building, and that specific constraints of 
grammar are governed by timing principles, has played a crucial 
role. The data considered here are necessarily a rather delimited set 
of the complex array of reconstruction effects. Extensions to a much 
fuller range of argument anaphora, as well as bound variable 
anaphora and reciprocity, are developed in Barss 1994. 

36 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 


1 See Barss 1986, 1988 for a contrasting viewpoint. In the the- 
ory of empty categories advanced there, all ECs are featureless with 
respect to the binding theory, their distribution constrained by 
principles other than the binding theory. 

2 The system developed in the sections reviewed here of Barss 
1986, 1988 assumes IP to be the root of a CFC, following Chomsky 
1986b. Given the VP-internal subjects theory, VP is the CFC root, but 
this modification is easily incorporated; the antecedents for the 
reflexive will be the VP internal trace of the raised subject. For ease 
of exposition I keep to the original set of assumptions here. See Barss 
1986 for discussion. 

3 Since Chomsky and Lasnik propose that (in all cases possible) 
all non-determiner material of an overtly moved WH-phrase is 
eliminated from the A' position to which it is overtly moved, the LF 
for (5b) is more accurately (i): 

(i) [cp [d which]4 [d whichJs did [ip he give [np £4 book that John 
read] [pp to [NP e^ woman]]]] 

I omit this additional complexity for ease of discussion. See Barss 
1994 for critical discussion of this type of LF operation. 

■* These two are logically equivalent. I draw here on the discus- 
sion of quantification in Higginbotham 1983, 1985, 1993; 
Higginbotham and May 1981; May 1985; McCawley 1981; and Neale 

5 I am here extending the explicit system advanced by Chomsky 
and by Lasnik; their examples deal only with WH-operators, but I 
believe they intend the system to extend to all quantifiers. Lasnik 
1993 observes that LF accusative Case assignment — A-movement of 
the direct object to Spec-Agro — will, in simple cases, take over the 
function of QR- While this is correct for clause-bounded quantifica- 
tion, it will not extend to the wide-scope examples discussed below. 

6 I assume for ease of exposition that ellipsis reconstruction is 
copying of the material within the antecedent VP over into the ellip- 
sis site. Fiengo & May 1994 present an alternative theory of ellipsis 
reconstruction, under which the elided material is syntactically pro- 
jected at LF. The differences between the accounts are immaterial 



Barss: Derivations and Reconstruction 37 


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. 1994. Anaphora and the timing of dependency formation. 

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Brody, Michael. 1979. Infinitivals, relative clauses, and deletion. 

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. 1993. Lexico-logical form. University College London. 

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. 1981. Lectures on government and binding. Dordrecht: Foris 

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. 1993. A minimalist program for linguistic theory. The view 

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& Howard Lasnik. 1994. Principles and parameters theory. 

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. 1990. Types of A'-dependencies. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. 

Ev.ANS, Gareth. 1980. Pronouns. Linguistic Inquiry 11.2. 337-62. 
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The syntax of wh-in-situ. The proceedings of the 1987 West 

Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics. 
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MA: MIT Press. 
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3 8 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

. 1985. On semantics. Linguistic Inquiry 16.4. 547-93. 

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and S. J. Keyser, 195-227. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. 
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crossing. The Linguistic Review 1. 41-80. 
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Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


J. Eraser Bennett* 

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 

Evidence for iambic foot structure in Thai is of four 
kinds: bimoraic minimal word effects, the distribution of 
major and minor syllables, syllable shortening and length- 
ening to achieve iambic (LH) rhythm, and word final stress. 
These suggest 'monopody', an alignment between feet and 
prosodic words. The inventory of iambs and the specific 
facts of Thai can be derived within an Optimality Theoretic 
analysis by factoring iambicity into three components: 
right-headedness of syllables, heaviness of head-syllables, 
and foot disyllabicity. A constraint-based analysis can also 
account for iambic structure in multisyllabic Indie loans. 

1. Introduction 

Iambic metrical feet play an important role in Standard Thai. Iambic 
metrical feet are required for a cogent analysis of four distinct 
prosodic phenomena: (i) the minimal size of prosodic words in Thai, 
(ii) the distribution of major and minor syllables, (iii) lengthening 
and shortening of syllables in order to make better iambic feet, (iv) 
and word-level stress. 

While describing the role of iambic metrical structure in minimal 
word effects and the other prosodic phenomena, I will proceed 
somewhat informally. Iambic structure in Thai can be readily for- 
malized within Optimality Theory as the interaction of component 
constraints, though. In fact, no novel constraints, beyond those al- 
ready proposed, are required. Whereas the constraint interactions 
responsible for the above-listed phenomena (i-iv) are fairly simple, 
more complicated ones are required to account for the behavior of 
polysyllabic Indic loan words. 

The paper is organized as follows: §2 presents arguments for 
iambic foot structure in Thai: §2.1 first establishes that metrical foot 
structure is relevant to Thai, and §2.2 argues that metrical feet in 
Thai must be iambic. §3.1 formalizes the analysis of §2 in terms of 
Optimality Theory, and §3.2 then shows that the analysis of §3.1 ex- 
plains coda epenthesis and stress in compound words. §3.4 sketches 
a prosodic analysis of Indic loan words, arguing that they constitute a 
single prosodic domain, and then extending the analysis of §3.1 to 
coda epenthesis within Indic loan words. 

4 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

2. Iambic structure in Thai 

2.1. Foot structure: prosodic word minimality 

The purpose of this section is to establish that metrical feet (Ft) are 
needed in Thai. I claim that an analysis which incorporates metrical 
feet is able to explain facts about minimal word size in Thai, which 
must be stipulated in an analysis which does not make use of feet. 

Recent approaches to the morphology-phonology interface, es- 
pecially Prosodic Morphology and its heir, Optimality Theory 
(McCarthy & Prince 1986; McCarthy & Prince 1993a,b, Prince & 
Smolensky 1993), frequently attribute word minimality effects to 
the influence of metrical foot structure. These approaches view re- 
quirements that prosodic words consist of at least two moras or syl- 
lables as the effect of two interacting principles: first, metrical feet 
consist of two moras or two syllables; and second, every prosodic 
word contains at least one foot. Where these two principles are 
strongly active, monomoraic prosodic words are disallowed. 

Thai displays exactly these sorts of word minimality require- 
ment. The minimal prosodic word (PrWd) in Thai is a single bimoraic 
syllable, having one of the shapes in (la-c), with a corresponding 
morale structure (2a-c).l Note that each minimal prosodic word is ex- 
actly two moras long. 2 

(1) a. Ci(Cm)VCf ton 'stem' ^V. 

b. Ci(Cni)VV taa 'eye' <Rn 

c. Ci (Cm) V V Cf tbjp 'to reply' ^ail 

(2) a. a b. o c. a 

/Tf /^ K> 

ton ta top 

Furthermore, monomoraic syllables (i.e., light, open syllables) 
never appear as prosodic words.3 When underlying /CV/ syllables do 
occur in stressed position (either in isolation or word-fmally), an 
epenthetic glottal coda augments the underlyingly monomoraic word 
to bimoraic respectability.'^ Examples are given in (3), where outlined 
characters represent epenthetic material. This augmentation is a sort 
of iambic lengthening, as wiU be seen in §2.2.2. 

(3) a /to/ [to?] 'table' \^z 

b. /du/ [dii?] 'fierce' 9\ 

c. /ko/ [kb?] 'island' imi; 

This pattern of minimally bimoraic prosodic words and disal- 
lowed monomoraic prosodic words is expected under the hypothesis 
that (i) Thai has metrical foot structure, (ii) light monosyllables are 
not licit feet, and (iii) every prosodic word must contain at least one 
foot. A theory under which Thai metrical structure does not include 
feet must simply stipulate these facts, though. 

Bennett: lambicity in Thai 4 1 

2.2. Iambic foot structure 

Minimally bimoraic words suggest the presence of foot structure, but 

the heavy monosyllables seen thus far do not indicate what kind of 

foot defines the minimal word in Thai. Below, I present three lines of 
argument that foot structure in Thai is iambic. 

The basic foot inventory of the languages of the world is still a 
matter of debate, but there is general agreement among authors on 
the inventory of licit surface feet (see Prince 1990, Hayes 1991 for 
closely related proposals, Kager 1993 for a different approach). 
Hayes (1991:61) proposes three basic types of feet: syllabic trochees, 
morale trochees and iambs. Each type has a set of characteristic 
shapes (4). (L and H indicate light and heavy syllables, respectively; 
parentheses indicate foot boundaries.) 

(4) a. Syllabic Trochee: {(ao)} 

b. Moraic Trochee: {(LL), (H)} 

c. Iamb: {(LH), (H)} 

Of these three types, we can disregard syllabic trochees, which 
are disyllabic regardless of syllable weight. These plainly do not de- 
fine the minimal word in Thai, where monosyllabic words abound. 
The heavy monosyllables seen so far (1-3) cannot decide between 
moraic trochees (4b) or as iambs (4c), since (H) forms a licit foot of 
either type. 

Three lines of evidence support an analysis of Thai in terms of 
iambs, rather than moraic trochees. First, the iambic set accounts for 
the patterns of light/heavy syllables in one- and two-syllable words; 
second, syllables lengthen and shorten in order to conform to an 
iambic template (Prince's (1990) 'iambic quantitative dynamism'); 
and third, iambic feet account for the facts of word-level stress. 

2.2.1. Heavy and light syllable placement 

If iambic (rather than moraic trochaic) feet characterize prosodic 
words in Thai, we should expect to find both kinds of iambs as mini- 
mal prosodic words — i.e., both disyllabic (LH) sequences and heavy 
monosyllables (H). In fact, minimal words in Thai are of just these 
two shapes. As seen in §2.1, bimoraic monosyllables (H) make ac- 
ceptable prosodic words. (LH) prosodic words are also common, in 
the form of minor syllable-major syllable sequences. 

Southeast Asian languages commonly have a class of 'minor syl- 
lables' or 'presyllables' (Henderson 1965). Minor syllables never 
stand alone; they are typically unstressed, light and open; and their 
range of possible initial consonants, vowels, and tones, is sharply re- 
duced. 'Major' syllables have none of these restrictions. (5) provides 
examples of aminor-<7major words in Thai. Inasmuch as major syllables 
are bimoraic (cf. 2) and minor syllables, being light and open, are 
monomoraic, these are straightforward examples of (LH) prosodic 

4 2 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

(5) a. ka.t^i? 'coconut milk' T\t.y\ 

b. ta.puu 'nail' ^i;i) 

c. sa.nuk 'fun' cJi^n 

d. la.mut 'sp. fruit' 9rjj^ 

e. pra.t^eet 'country' lJ'3i;ivlP( 

In contrast, and (LL) sequences, which we would expect to find 
if morale trochaic feet were a feature of Thai prosody, are unaccept- 
able as prosodic words. ^ /CVCV/ inputs, like /CV/ words, are aug- 
mented by an epenthetic glottal stop coda (6). ((LH) sequences thus 
qualify as 'minimal words', despite their greater bulk than (H) mini- 
mal words.) 

(6) a. /ka.t''i7 *[ka.t'hl [ka.t^7] 'coconut milk' ns^vi 

b. / *[] [] 'to fill up' tl'^J^^ 

c. /ra.jaV *[ra.ja] [ra.jd?] 'space, period' i^us 

Thus, syllabic trochees and morale trochees do not describe the 
distribution of heavy and light syllables in disyllabic words, but 
iambic feet do. We may note in passing that by having minimally 
iambic prosodic words. Thai stands against Spring's (1990:79, n. 29) 
speculation that iambs do not characterize the minimal word of any 

2.2.2. Iambic lengthening and shortening 

A crucial claim of the theory of foot structure developed by Prince 
1990 and Hayes 1991 is that the constituents of trochaic feet are 
preferentially balanced, but those of iambs are preferentially unbal- 
anced. That is, (quantity-sensitive) trochees consist of two balanced 
moras, but the preferred iambic foot is an unbalanced (LH) sequence. 
Prince 1990 shows that iambic systems frequently adjust the weight 
of syllables within feet to achieve this imbalance, a process he calls 
'iambic quantitative dynamism' (7). 6 

(7) Iambic Quantitative Dynamism 

In a rhythmic unit (W S) [where W = 'weak' and S = 'strong'] 

a. Lengthening. S should tend to lengthen. 

b. Shortening. W should tend to shorten. 

Both lengthening and shortening are attested in Thai. Iambic lengthening: [L] ^ [H], [LL] ^ [LH] 

The first sort of iambic dynamism lengthens the input in order to 
make a better iambic foot. Glottal coda epenthesis, which we have al- 
ready seen in connection with word minimality, is in fact a kind of 
iambic lengthening. It is visible in four contexts: one-syllable inputs, 
two-syllable inputs, lexical items which lengthen under stress, and 
'isolative style' alternations. 

Bennett: lambicity in Thai 4 3 

One- and two-syllable inputs: CV -^ CV? . 

As seen above, coda epenthesis gives underlyingly monomoraic 
words two surface moras, so that they form acceptable (H) iambs. 
(3a) is repeated for convenience. 

(3) a. /to/ [to?] 'table' T^s 

Similarly, /CVCV/ inputs are augmented to [CV.CV?], resulting in 
an acceptable (LH) iamb. (6a) is repeated. 

(6) a. /ka.t^^r/ *[ka.t*Ml [ka-t^^i?] 'coconut milk' nsvi' 

(6) demonstrates that neither mere binarity nor morale trochee foot 
structure is sufficient to define minimal words in Thai, for *[ka.t''r] is 
binary on both the morale and syllabic level. It ought to form a per- 
fect morale trochee, but it is unacceptable as a prosodic word. 

Lexical CV ~ CV? alternations under stress 

Iambic lengthening is strikingly evident in /CV/ lexical items which 
are used both as prefixes and independent words, of which the prefix 
pVa'VM'ai; 'sacred, royal' provides the clearest example. When prefixed 
to a major syllable, p'^ra appears as a monomoraic 'minor syllable' (8); 
but as an independent, stressed prosodic word p'^ra appears with a 
glottal coda (9). 




'sacred-lord, God' 

■wii; i^n 










P^^^ H 

'lord; monk; Buddha image' 





'Burmese monk' 



We can account for this alternation by observing that, as a prefix, 
p^ra- is able to form a (LH) foot with the following syllable. As an in- 
dependent word, though, p^ra- becomes subject to the requirement 
that all prosodic words contain at least one foot. Having only one 
mora underlyingly, /p^ra/ is augmented by glottal epenthesis to 
[p'^ra?], a licit (H) iamb. 

The compound (9b), p''ra?.p''a.maa 'Burmese monk' conforms to 
the same pattern if we view compounds as being composed of con- 
stituent prosodic words (10) (cf. McCarthy & Prince 1993a:5 and be- 
low). Recall the hypothesis (§2.1) that every prosodic word must 
contain at least one foot. If this requirement applies to each con- 
stituent prosodic word of a compound, the augmentation of /pVa/ in 
(9b) is predicted: because it forms a separate prosodic word, it must 
meet foot structure requirements. 

(10) [prwd [prwd (P^'ra?)] [prwd (p^a)(maa)]] 'Christian priest' 

CV ~ CV? alternations in the 'isolative style' 

Alternation under stress is not limited to a small class of lexical 
items. Gedney 1947 notes that 'any Thai expression may be pro- 
nounced with a pause at every point of syllable juncture; this pro- 

44 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

nunciation is a common device for making one's speech very clear or 
very emphatic'. In this 'isolative style', every /CV/ syllable is aug- 
mented by a glottal coda (11). 

(11) a. /p\a-caaw/ [p\a?.caaw] 'sacred-lord' VJ'is^ istl 

b. /pha-'ioT}/ [p'Ya?-?or)] 'sacred-CLF' ViizQ<^ 

c. /tapuu/ [ta?.puu] 'nail' ^s^lJ 

d. /prat'^eet/ [pra^.t^'eet] 'country' iJ'5^ivn=l 

Henderson 1949 observes that each syllable of a multisyllabic word 
pronounced in isolative style '[conforms] in structure to the pattern 
appropriate to monosyllables uttered in isolation'. I take this to mean 
that each syllable must form a prosodic word. Given that prosodic 
words must be minimally iambs, it follows that each syllable in 
isolative style must be an iamb — specifically (H), which is the only 
licit monosyllabic iamb. /CV/ syllables therefore receive a glottal 
coda, boosting them to [(H)] iambic prosodic words. Iambic shortening: [HH] ^ [LH] 

The flip side of iambic quantitative dynamism is iambic shortening, 
where the first syllable of an (HH) sequence is shortened to match 
the (LH) template. Shortening occurs in a number of unanalyzable 
polysyllabic words, mostly Indie loans (12). These words, underly- 
ingly /HH/, are shortened to (LH) in normal speech (Henderson's 
(1949) 'connective style'), but not in the isolative style. 

(12) UR Normal Isolative 

a. /p'^aasaa/ [p'^a.saa] [p'^aa.saa] 'language' /nwi 

b. /?aacaan/ [?a.caan] [?aa.caan] 'teacher' an^niy 

c. /?aahaan/ [?a.haan] [?aa.haan] 'food' aivni 

These are genuine vowel shortenings. That (12a-c) are underly- 
ingly /HH/, not /LH/, is shown by their isolative pronunciations. As 
just seen, underlyingly light, open syllables receive a glottal coda in 
isolative speech (11). If (12a) were underlyingly /p'^asaa/, we would 
expect its isolative pronunciation to be *p^a?.saa. This is not the case, 
though; the isolative pronunciation of (12a) shows no glottal 
epenthesis. The first vowel of (12a) must therefore be underlyingly 

The normal, shortened pronunciations in (12) can be explained if 
disyllabic words prefer to form iambic feet: shortening the first 
vowel makes the word an optimal (LH) iamb.'^ Thai thus exhibits 
iambic shortening as well as iambic lengthening (§ Iambic 
foot structure neatly explains both, but a theory which posits 
trochaic foot structure, or which does not incorporate foot structure 
all, must stipulate these facts. 

2.2.3. Word stress 

Thai places a single stress on the final syllable of unanalyzable one-, 
two- and three-syllable words in normal, 'connective' pronunciation 
(Haas 1964, Duryea 1991); and while iambic metrical structure does 

Bennett: lambicity in Thai 4 5 

not entail word-final stress, word-final stress is most straightfor- 
wardly analyzed in terms of iambic feet. (13) gives foot structures 
for unanalyzable one- to four-syllable words. (Words of three and 
four syllables are rare among the non-Indic portion of the vo- 

(13) a. [('taa)] 'eye' (?in 

b. [(ta.'puu)] 'nail' ^i;iJ 

c. [kVra.'ha?)] 'fortune' Fiivii^ 

d. [(?a.|Waj)(ja.'wa?)] 'organ' Qiuit: 

See §3.4 for further discussion of (13c-d). 

Right-headedness is manifested at the prosodic word level as 
well the foot level (and also, as Duryea 1991 notes, at the phrase 
level). In (13d), where the PrWd contains two feet, the head syllable 
of the leftward foot takes a secondary stress. A similar pattern is 
visible in compound words. Compounds have word-final stress, with 
secondary stress on the head syllables of leftward compound ele- 
ments (14). 

(14) a. itiam + 'p'^iurj 'water' -i- 'bee' = 'honey' 'UlS-3 

b. iplaa + kra.'porj 'fish' -i- 'can' = 'sardines' 'Ll6^'in'5i;iJa>3 

c. sa.inuk+ sa.'baaj 'fun' -i- 'at ease' = 'happy & well' eiXi'aei'Uiti 

Recursive PrWd structure in compounds, appealed to above to 
explain coda epenthesis in (9b), can also explain the distribution of 
secondary stress. Being PrWd's, the constituents of compounds must 
all have their own iambic foot structure; and given that PrWd's are 
right-headed, primary stress will fall on the rightmost element, and 
secondary stress on the preceding ones, as in (15). 

(15) PrWd 

PrWd PrWd 

I I 

Ft Ft 

/I y\ 

I I I I 

It might be countered that since word-level stress falls so regu- 
larly on the final syllable of the word, we could just write a rule to 
'stress the last syllable of a word' and do without metrical feet. Such 
a rule would be descriptively adequate, but would fail to express any 
connection with the other points developed so far: (i) that Thai re- 
quires at least one bimoraic syllable in each prosodic word; (ii) that 
the distribution of heavy and light syllables in one- and two-syllable 
words matches the inventory of iambic feet developed in Prince 
1990 and Hayes 1991; and (iii) that adjustments to the weight of 
syllables in disyllabic words through glottal epenthesis and first- 
syllable shortening result in better iambic feet. Iambic foot structure 
links them all in a more unified theory of Thai prosody. 

4 6 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

2.3. Monopody 

The account developed here demands a different understanding of 
'monosyllabicity' in Thai. Southeast Asian languages, Thai among 
them, are commonly called 'monosyllabic'; the common notion of 
monosyllabicity, that 'every word is one syllable long', is plainly 
wrong, though, for polysyllabic lexical items are common in Thai and 
most other 'monosyllabic' languages of Southeast Asia. 

In connection with Thai, Lehman (1973:532) proposed a 
prosodic formulation of monosyllabicity: 

a monosyllabic language is one where, by language-specific 
convention of the phonology, syllable boundaries function as 
[phonological] word boundaries at the point where mor- 
phemes enter a phrase marker in a sentential derivation. 

— that is, monosyllabic languages enforce strict identity between syl- 
lables and lexical words. In view of the active role of iambic foot 
structure in Thai, though, this strict monosyllabicity cannot be main- 
tained. I suggest that Thai is actually monopodic, enforcing alignment 
between feet and prosodic words. Iambic lengthening and shortening 
especially support this notion: where a prosodic word can be made 
into a foot by the addition or subtraction of a mora, Thai does so. 
While I believe that monopody has wide implications for Southeast 
Asian languages, I will not develop the notion formally in §3. 

3. lambicity & Optimality 

The account developed so far, while convincing as narrative, is not 
sufficiently formalized to explain why Thai behaves as it does rather 
than another way which would achieve substantially similar func- 
tional goals. Why should a licit iamb be formed by adding an 
epenthetic coda to /kat'^iV rather than deleting the final vowel, since 
*[kat] is as much a licit iamb as [kat*^!'?]? In order to provide a more 
explicit explanation, in this section I develop an account of the Thai 
facts within Optimality Theory (OT). OT is a constraint-based, 
declarative model of phonology which views phonological phenom- 
ena as the result of the interaction of ranked constraints on surface 
representations, not as rules which operate on underlying represen- 
tations (see Prince & Smolensky 1993, McCarthy & Prince 1993a, b 
and references therein). 

My goal, then, is to derive the Thai facts from the interaction of 
surface constraints. Among other things, these constraints will derive 
the inventory of acceptable iambs. My strategy is straightforward: to 
decompose iambicity in component parts, and identify each compo- 
nent with a constraint. All the constraints needed have been pro- 
posed in earlier work. I intend to show how they combine to produce 
iambic foot structure. ^ 

I will not try to define here a single set of constraints capable of 
deriving all Thai morphological alternations. In particular, I will not 

Bennett: lambicity in Thai 4 7 

attempt a comprehensive treatment of Indie loans and compounds, 
since they form a distinct subset of Thai morphology, parallel in 
many ways to the Latinate vocabulary of English (Gedney 1947). 

3.1. Deriving iambic feet in Thai 

Hayes 1991 observed that the defining characteristic of iambic feet, 
both (LH) and (H), is the presence of a heavy syllable at their right 
edges. (Of course, (H) iambs have a heavy syllable at the left edge of 
the foot as well, but this is incidental.) Since (H) is a licit iamb as well 
as (LH), disyllabicity is not required, though we shall see that it is 
preferred. Three constraints express this state of affairs: (i) right- 
headedness; (ii) head-syllable heaviness; and (iii) disyllabicity, or 
foot binarity at the syllable level. 

3.1.1. Right-headedness 

Trochees are united vis a vis iambs by leftward placement of the 
head syllable or mora. McCarthy & Prince 1993a point out (n. 6) that 
Prince & Smolensky's (1993) constraint RHYTHM Type=TR0CHAIC can 
be expressed as an alignment constraint (16).^ 

(16) Rhythm Type=Trochaic 
ALIGN (H(Ft), L, Ft, L) 

'Align the left edge of every foot head with the left edge of a 

In contrast, iambs as a class are distinguished by rightward place- 
ment of the head syllable, an alignment-theoretic formulation of 
RHYTHM-Type=Iambic natural extension of McCarthy & Prince's sug- 
gestion is to formulate as an alignment constraint also (17). 

(17) rhythm-Type=Iambic 
Align (H(Ft), R, Ft, R) 

'Align the right edge of every foot head with the right edge of a 

Since Thai word stress is uniformly word-final (§2.2.4), the con- 
straint RhythM-Type=IambiC must be undominated in Thai. 

3.1.2. Head-syllable heaviness: the Stress-to- Weight 

Rhythm Type=I ensures that the head or stressed syllable will lie at 
the right edge of an iamb. This does not adequately express Hayes' 
observation, though, that iambs have heavy syllables at their right 
edges. We can neatly express Hayes' observation by capitalizing on 
RH-TYPE=I, which requires that the head of every iamb lie at its right 
edge. From this we can restate the basic observation: iambs show a 
close connection between head syllables and syllable weight.^ ^ 

The augmentation of /CV/ syllables under stress (as in /kat'iV^ 
[ka-t*"!'?]) shows that Thai requires stressed syllables to be heavy. This 
inflexible heaviness of stressed syllables can be expressed as the 
Stress-to-Weight Principle (18). (The name is due to Prince 1990, 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

who introduces the Stress-to-Weight Principle as the converse of his 
Weight to Stress Principle (19).) 

(18) Stress-to-Weight Principle (SWP): 'If stressed, then heavy'. 

(19) Weight-to-Stress Principle (WSP) (= Prince's (3)): 'If heavy, 
then stressed'.! 1 

The SWP can be expressed as an alignment constraint (20) — here 
formulated in terms of right edges, though directional specification is 
not crucial. 

(20) Stress-to-Weight Principle (alignment version) 
ALIGN (H(Ft), R, a^^i, R) 

'Align the right edge of every foot head with the right edge of a 
heavy syllable'. 

Prince 1990 considered the Stress-to-Weight Principle SWP to 
be a principle of grammar 'with a different [i.e., less important] posi- 
tion than Weight to Stress in the ranking of rhythmic priorities' (fn. 
6). His comment finds natural expression in OT, where there is no 
difficulty in considering the SWP as a constraint of the grammar, 
with its own place in the constraint hierarchy.' 2 if ranked above 
FlLL-|i (21), the SWP is can motivate FILL violations — that is, 
epenthesis — in the interests of a head syllable heaviness. (FlLL-|i, a 
member of a large family of constraints, is specified here because 
§3.4 requires a separate ranking for FiLL-o.) I assume that the glottal 
quality of the epenthesis is a matter of phonetic implementation.! 3 
(22-23) illustrate its effect on both /CV/ and /CVCV/ inputs. '4 

(21) FlLL-|i: 'Do not add mora nodes which are not included in UR' 


Input: /to/ RH-TYPE=I 



a. f^ [('t6?)l 


b. K't6)l 



Input: Ikat^i/ Rh-TypE=1 



a. ^ r(ka.'tN'?)l 




Undominated Rh-TYPE=I ensures that the rightmost syllable is 
head of the foot, and the SWP favors those candidates with heavy 
head syllables. The epenthetic codas of (22a) and (23a) violate the 
lowly-ranked FlLL-|i, but since (22a) and (23a) satisfy both Rh- 
TYPE=I and the SWP, they are selected as the optimal outputs. 

I note in passing that factoring out head-syllable heaviness in 
the form of the SWP suggests a way to treat the few attested quan- 
tity-insensitive iambic systems: perhaps in these systems, the SWP is 
lowly-ranked, so that foot heads need not be heavy. 

Bennett: lambicity in Thai 


3.1.3. Disyllabicity 

Thai forms disyllabic feet when possible, even at the expense of un- 
derlying moras not being parsed into syllables — as seen in the short- 
ening of /?aahaan/ to [?a<a>.haan] in (12c) (pointed brackets <> indi- 
cate unparsed material). '5 This results from a constraint which 
favors disyllabic iambs dominating one which requires all underlying 
moras to be parsed into syllables. The former we may take to be 
some form of FOOT BiNARITY at the syllable level (24), the latter (25) a 
member of the PARSE family of 'Faithfulness' constraints. Their inter- 
action is shown in (26). 

(24) FOOT BINARITY (= Prince & Smolensky's (61), p. 47) 

Feet are binary at some level of analysis (|i,a) [i.e., over moras 
or syllables]. 

(25) Parse-^ 

Moras should be parsed into syllables. 


Input: /?aahaan/ 

Ft-Bin (a) 


a. [(?aa)(haan)l 


b. c^ [(?a<a>.haan)] 


On the other hand, disyllabicity is not a necessary condition on 
iambs in Thai, since both (H) and (LH) are licit feet. Thai shows no 
inclination to augment underlying one-syllable words to two sylla- 
bles; /taa/ does not surface as, e.g., *[?a.taa].l6 FOOT BiNARITY (a) is not 
so highly ranked as to cause the epenthesis of entire syllables, and 
we may rank it below FiLL-a (27). 


Input: /taa/ 


FT-BiN (a) 

a. i^ [(taa)] 


b. [(?si.taa)l 


3.2. Compound forms 

Augmentation within compounds can also be explained by means 
prosodic structure and the SWP. As above, glottal augmentation 
supplies the essential evidence. 

The unanalyzable one- and two-syllable forms considered so far 
constitute single domains for foot structure, as do prefixed forms 
such as p'^ra.caaw (11). Foot structure may not be built across com- 
pound constituents, though. The frequent minor-syllable formative 
pra- iJlii supplies an example, pra- has no definable semantic con- 
tent, but it has a homophone, meaning 'to sprinkle'. The minor sylla- 
ble prefix pra- never takes a glottal coda (in normal pronunciation) 
(28), but pra? 'to sprinkle' bears an epenthesized coda even when 
collocated with another verb (29). 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 



a. [pra.t''eet] 'country' lll^ivifl 

b. [] 'to fill' \]'iz^ 

c. [pra.paa] 'water supply' iJisiJn 

a. [pra?.praaj] 'to sprinkle' + 'to scatter' iJusiJ'a'igj 

b. [praT.p'Vom] 'to sprinkle' + 'to sprinkle' lI'I^'WIU 

The recursion of PrWd in compounds, as in (9) and (15) above, 
provides the basis for an explanation of this persistence of glottal co- 
das in (30). Because compound words are composed of constituent 
PrWd's, each element of /pra+praaj/ must have its own foot struc- 
ture. Presumably a constraint ensures that both /pra/ and /praaj/ 
are parsed as PrWd's. Prince & Smolensky's (1993:43) LX==Pr con- 
straint ('every lexical word is a prosodic word') suggests itself. The 
Stress to Weight Principle now requires that head syllables of feet be 
heavy, [(praaj)], being heavy, satisfies the SWP as is, but [(pra)] does 
not. Parsing /pra/ as [(pra?)] satisfies the SWP, though, at the modest 
cost of a FlLL-|i violation (30). 1^ 


Input: /pra+praaj/ 





a. ^ [[(pra?)][(praaj)]] 


b. r[(pra)][(praai)]] 


c. f(pra. praaj)] 


3.3. Taking stock 

The constraints developed so far and their known rankings are given 
in (31): 

(31) a. Rhythm-Type=Iambic, LX=PR: undominated 
b. SWP » FlLL-^ 


Note, by the way, that we now have an explanation for the 
isolative style. Isolative utterances are truly monosyllabic in 
Lehman's (1973) sense, for each syllable constitutes a prosodic word. 
This can easily be expressed by an alignment constraint (32). 

(32) ALIGN (o, L, PrWd, L) 

'Align the left edge of every syllable with the left edge of a 

If (32) is undominated in the constraint hierarchy associated with ^ 

isolative speech, it will produce exactly monosyllabic alignment of o M 

and PrWd;in contrast, the constraint hierarchy for normal speech W 
ranks ALIGN (a, L, PrWd, L) so low that it has no visible effects. 

3.4. Longer prosodic domains 

Iambic metrical structure is also relevant to the analysis of longer 
prosodic domains. Because of the morphological complexity of multi- 
syllabic words and constraints of space, I can only present the out- 
lines of an analysis and comment on relevant portions. 

Bennett: lambicity in Thai 5 1 

Thai words of non-Indic origin are generally limited to one or 
two syllables (Gedney 1947:66). For longer prosodic domains, we 
must look at Indic-derived vocabulary. The numerous loan words of 
Indic origin form a distinct portion of Thai morphophonology, and 
pose difficult problems of morpheme alternations. Iambic metrical 
structure offers an intriguing line of inquiry, but I will not attempt to 
solve these problems here. In this section, I first propose that Indic 
compounds do not have the recursive PrWd structure of the com- 
pounds seen previously (§2.2.3). I then present an Optimality 
Theoretic analysis which will account for patterns of glottal coda 
epenthesis in four-syllable PrWd's. 

3.3.1. Indic compounds as single prosodic domains 

Indic vocabulary items include both single morphemes and semantic 
compounds. I propose that Indic compounds do not generally have 
the recursive structure illustrated in (15), but form single PrWd's. 
There is at least tentative evidence for this, of two types: 

Morphologically, Indic morphemes frequently show alternations 
between monosyllabic and disyllabic forms. Where a disyllabic H-L 
form appears as the prior constituent, the light syllable frequently 
forms an iambic foot with a following heavy syllable, as in (33). 
(Because (33a) contains a recognizable native Thai morpheme caj 
'heart', it is parsed with recursive PrWd structure.) In contrast, feet 
are never formed across constituents of non-Indic compounds (cf. 
pra?.praaj.) Because of this, it seems likely that Indic compounds are 
more akin to affixed forms such as p^racaaw (8). 

(33) a. [(p^uum)][(caj)]] p''uum 'land' -t- caj 'heart' 

= 'proud' ^2r 

b. [(p^uu)(misaat)] p''uumi 'land' + saaf '-ology' 

= 'geography' fiSpllc^^l 

Semantically, Indic compounds are modifier + head, whereas 
non-Indic compounds in (14) are head + modifier (14). Furthermore, 
many Indic morphemes are morphologically bound, so that it is not 
clear that the Lx==PR constraint ('lexical words are prosodic words') 
applies to them.) 

3.3.2. Glottal epenthesis in three- and four-syllable words 

(13c,d), repeated below, illustrate the evidence which must be ex- 
plained. Three-syllable sequences of LLH are allowed, but four- 
syllable sequences of LLLH are not: underlying LLLH sequences are 
augmented to LHLH. 

(13) c. [k''a(ra.'ha?)] 'fortune' fliViJi 

d. [('?a.|Waj)(ja.'wa?)] 'organ' Biu'^z 

It is not clear that the structure proposed for (13c) would be phonet- 
ically distinct from a three-syllable foot (i.e., [(k'^a.ra.'ha?)]. What is 
clear is that k'^a in (13c) does not form a foot of its own, while that 
the first two syllables of (13d) do form a foot. Other three- and four- 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

syllable patterns of light and heavy syllables are attested, of course. 
The question remains, though, why two consecutive light syllables 
are tolerated, but three are not. 

I propose that the influence of FOOT BiNARlTY (o) is responsible. 
Prosodic words of the shape [L(LH)], with an unfooted light syllable, 
can be tolerated in trisyllabic PrWd's. But two adjacent unfooted light 
syllables, [LL(LH)], cannot be tolerated, for the LL pair can form a 
foot without violating FOOT BiNARITY (a). The second syllable of the 
foot thus formed must receive an epenthetic coda in order to satisfy 
the SWP, though — hence the iambic lengthening of (13d), but not 
(14c). (34-35) present constraint tableaux; superscript numbers in 
brackets refer to notes on the tableaux below. 


Input: /k^'araha/ 












a. Bs^ rk'^ada.ha?)! [3] 



b. [(k'^a.ra.ha?)! 



c. [<k''a>(ra.ha?)l [4] 



d. r(kV)(ra.ha?)l [5] 



e. [(k'^a.ra?)(ha?)l 




Input: /?awajawa/ 










a. B^ [(?a.wai)(ia.wa?)l [6] 


b. [(?a.wa.ia.wa?)l t^] 



c. r^a.wada.wa?)! 



d. [(?a.wa)(ia.wa?)l 



[1] ParSE-Feat: a constraint to the effect that all underlying features 
should be parsed into prosodic structure. Cf. Parse-o, which fa- 
vors syllable nodes in prosodic structure being parsed into feet. 

[2] The ranking of FT-BiN (o) with respect to Parse-o determines 
whether (34a) or (34b) is deemed optimal, the choice is not cru- 
cial: either way, a [LLH] sequence is tolerated. I have arbitrarily 
chosen FT-BiN (a) » PARSE-a. 

[3] The optimal parse has an unfooted light syllable, violating 
Parse-o, but it conforms to FoOT-BiN (a). 

[4] Leaving the first syllable unparsed (36c) would satisfy FOOT-BiN 
(o), but the dominating constraint Parse-Features does not allow 

[5] (34d,e) seek to avoid unparsed syllables and trisyllabic feet by 
parsing the first or third syllable as a second foot, with an 
epenthetic coda where required. Doing so accrues FlLL-|i viola- 

Bennett: lambicity in Thai 53 

tions, though, and (34d,e) fare worse than (34a,b) no matter how 
Foot Binarity (a) and Parse-o are ranked. 

[6] As with other cases of iambic lengthening, the epenthetic codas 
in (35a) are motivated by the SWP. Notice that the epenthetic 
coda in the second syllable of is a copy of the following initial 
consonant; this is in contrast to the glottal stop seen previously. I 
suspect that this difference of behavior is linked to the presence 
or lack of an adjacent PrWd boundary — roughly, glottal stop ap- 
pears when there is no following consonantal material in the 
same prosodic word. 

[7] Parsing /?awajawa/ as a quadrisyllable foot accrues FOOT 
Binarity (a) violations; similarly, a foot with two unparsed syl- 
lables (35c) accrues PARSE-a violations. 

The constraint-based account of iambic foot structure developed 
in previous sections can be extended to explain the distribution of 
coda epenthesis in three- and four-syllable cases, although some as- 
pects of the above analysis remain ambiguous. A fuller treatment of 
the Indie portion of Thai morphology and phonology is needed, of 
course, but it cannot be given here. 

4. Conclusion 

The impetus for this study lies largely in Henderson's (1965) obser- 
vation that 'among the features which have suggested themselves as 
typologically characteristic of a South East Asian linguistic 
area. ..are. ..syllabification patterns, i.e. the comparative structures of 
"tonic" and pre-tonic or post-tonic syllables, or "major" and "minor" 
syllables'. Among those Southeast Asian languages which distinguish 
'major' and 'minor' syllables, most by far place minor syllables to the 
left of a major syllable. Why should this be? I have sought to answer 
this broad typological question for Thai, within a formal theory of 
phonological and morphological structure. 

In fact, iambic metrical structure explains not only the leftward 
placement of minor syllables in Thai, but the acceptability of both 
(LH) and (H) sequences as minimal words, iambic lengthening and 
shortening, and word-level stress as well. Hayes' (1991) typology of 
iambic feet of may be derived in an Optimality Theoretic framework 
from the interaction of previously proposed constraints; among these 
are Prince's (1990) Stress-to-Weight Principle. An iambic metrical 
analysis, armed with the formalisms of OT, can be extended to ex- 
plain iambic lengthening in multisyllabic Indie loan words, and may 
have application to other aspects of Indie loan words' complicated 

Finally, in light of Henderson's observation above, I would like to 
suggest that iambic metrical structure and 'monopody' — the align- 
ment of feet and prosodic words — may have a wide application in 
Southeast Asian languages. Whether an iambic metrical analysis is 
extensible to all the languages of Southeast Asia which show leftward 

54 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

placement of minor syllables will require much further work to say, 
but I put it forward as a promising line of inquiry in the substantive 
typology of the Southeast Asian linguistic area. 


* An earlier version of this paper was presented to the Fifth 
meeting of the Formal Linguistics Society of Mid-America. Thanks to 
Simon Donnelly, Laura Downing, Molly Homer, Elaine Hsiao, Chuck 
Kisseberth, and Kris Lehman for helpful discussion and detailed 
comments; thanks also to Natalie Ekachinda for helping to verify Thai 
data. Naturally, no one but myself is responsible for remaining gaffes 
and errors. Numerous aspects of the analysis presented below have 
been altered since this paper was presented. I refer the interested 
reader to my dissertation (in progress) for more recent develop- 

1 For concreteness, (2) links initial consonants directly to the 
syllable node, and the final consonant of tdop (2c) to the second mora. 
Nothing that follows depends crucially on these links, though. 

2 The distribution of contour tones provides another line of 
evidence for bimoraic structures in (2). Contour tones can appear on 
open or closed syllables with long vowels, and short-voweled syl- 
lables with sonorant codas — CVV(X) and CVCson, respectively. Closed 
syllables with obstruent codas (CVCobstr) bear only level tones, 
though. If sonorant moras are the tone bearing units of Thai, these 
facts have a straightforward explanation: See Lehman 1973 for fur- 
ther discussion of the distribution of Siamese contour tones across 
nuclear and coda elements. 

3 Certain CV sentence-final particles are apparent exceptions: k^a, 
k^a, na, na, la, la. However, Gedney 1947 notes that these 'usually 
terminate in a roughly breathed, unvoiced vowel sound rather than 
in a glottal stop'. This ending (phonetically [h]?) appears to be a man- 
ifestation of a broader, tonally conditioned prosodic pattern. 

4 Whether glottal stops in Thai are underlying or epenthetic has 
been debated for many years (see Udom 1967 for a precis of earlier 
authors' views; more recently, Duryea 1992 sides with those who 
analyze all glottal stops as epenthetic). The status of syllable-initial 
glottal stops is debatable, but {pace Udom) distributional facts show 
syllable-final glottal stops to be unambiguously epenthetic. [?] ap- 
pears as a coda only on stressed syllables with short vowels; [?] is 
never a coda after long vowels, diphthongs or stressless CV syllables. 
In contrast, oral stops can be codas after short vowels, long vowels, 
and diphthongs. If [?] is underlyingly present in CV? syllables, we 
must infer either a set of unexplained gaps in the lexicon, or posit a 
rule of glottal deletion which to convert underlying /CVV?/ into sur- 
face [CVV]. No independent evidence exists for such a rule, though, 
and the apparent lexical gaps vanish if [CV?] is underlyingly /CV/. 

Bennett: lambicity in Thai 5 5 

5 Prince 1990 observes that the other logical possibility, (HL) is 
generally disfavored. 

6 Prince attributes Iambic Lengthening to the effects of his 
'Grouping Harmony', and Shortening to Grouping Harmony and the 
Weight-to-Stress Principle. In §3 I propose a different mechanism to 
account for lengthening and shortening. 

"7 These data are complicated by the fact that some /HH/ Indie 
loans can also pronounced with two long, stressed syllables (e.g., 
raac^aa "ji^i 'king'). I propose that in such words are treated as 
compounds, composed of two feet, i.e., [[(raa)][(c'^aa)]]. 

Burmese provides a somewhat parallel case: the first syllable of 
tarj.ka 'small change' is typically reduced to schwa, but it can also be 
pronounced unreduced, taij.ka. This unreduced form is clearly a com- 
pound, for it reduplicates according to the same pattern as com- 
pounds, tarf.tarf-ka.ka (Lehman, p.c). 

8 In decomposing iambicity into component factors, I am not 
challenging Hayes' (1991) 'Iambic/Trochaic Law', that elements con- 
trasting in intensity naturally form groupings with initial prominence 
(i.e., trochees), and elements contrasting in duration naturally form 
groupings with final prominence (i.e., iambs). Hayes defends his 
asymmetric foot inventory (4 above) on the basis of this proposed 
law, which he supports by appealing to broader perceptual studies. 
Unlike Kager 1993, I do not see any difficulty with appealing to 
extra-linguistic cognitive faculties to explain linguistic phenomena, 
but I propose to show how the extra-linguistic trend expressed by 
the Iambic/Trochaic Law may be formally implemented in a way 
that effectively handles the data at hand. 

9 Hayes 1991 argues against a symmetrical, parameterized for- 
mulation of foot types in terms of left/right-headedness and quan- 
tity sensitivity/insensitivity. I do not dispute Hayes' main contention, 
that the inventory of feet is asymmetric; but I derive the asymmetry 
from the influence of the Stress-to-Weight Principle {q.v. infra). 

'0 A more direct, brute-force formulation would be simply, 
'Iambs have heavy syllables at their right edges'. While this appears 
to be a species of alignment constraint, it specifies foot type, morale 
constituency of syllables, and directionality — not readily expressible 
in the algebra of generalized alignment. In contrast, the Stress-to- 
Weight Principle (below) requires no reference to foot type. 

' ' As Prince notes, 'stressed' in the WSP is systematically am- 
biguous between 'head of the foot' and 'prominent on the grid'. 

'2 If the SWP is a constraint like the WSP, why are its effects not 
seen outside iambic systems? I suspect it has to do with the gener- 
ally unfavored status of (HL) feet, stemming from the Iambic/ 
Trochaic Law of Hayes 1991. A trochaic system which includes an 
undominated constraint against (HL) feet will mask all effects of the 
SWP. I take no position on whether the badness of (HL) feet is de- 

5 6 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

rived from other principles (as in Prince 1990), or is simply stip- 
ulated by the grammar (a la Prince & Smolensky's (1993:59) RHYTH- 
MIC Harmony constraint). 

13 It may prove possible to connect this glottal quality with 
other features of Thai phonetics and phonology, in particular the 
unreleased quality of codas generally. 

1"* The constraint tableaux which follow observe the typograph- 
ical conventions of Prince & Smolensky 1993, to which the reader is 
referred for a complete explanation. 

15 I take no stand here on whether long vowels bear one or two 
moras underlyingly. 

1^ Unlike some languages, e.g., Axininca Campa (McCarthy & 
Prince 1993b:25ff). 

1"^ Recursive PrWd structure suggests a line of explanation for 
'pseudo-iambic shortening' in compounds. In many compounds, a 
long vowel in the first constituent is shortened, e.g., pa aA^ 'mouth' + 
kaa 'crow' -^ pak.kaa 'pen' (Duryea 1991). Such shortening makes the 
whole compound more iamb-like, since the first constituent's vowel 
is shortened. Both constituents of the compound may still be 
bimoraic, though. 


Bennett, J. F. In progress. Metrical foot structure in Thai and Kayah 
Li. Urbana: University of Illinois Ph.D. dissertation. 

Duryea, David S. 1991. Issues in Thai template phonology. Phonology 
at Santa Cruz, vol. 2, ed. by Armin Mester & Scarlett Robbins, 
33-58. Santa Cruz, CA: Syntax Research Center, University of 
California at Santa Cruz. 

GEDNEY, William. 1947. Indie loan-words in spoken Thai. Yale 
University Ph.D. dissertation. 

Haas, Mary R. 1964. Thai-English student's dictionary. Stanford: 
Stanford University Press. 

Hayes, Bruce. 1991/in press. Metrical stress theory: principles and 
case studies. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 

Henderson, Eugenie J. A. 1949. Prosodies in Siamese: a study in syn- 
thesis. Asia Major (New Series) 1:2.189-215. 

1965. The topography of certain phonetic and morphological 

characteristics of South East Asian languages. Lingua 15.400- 

Kager, Rene. 1993. Alternatives to the Iambic-Trochaic Law. Natural 
Language and Linguistic Theory 11.381-432. 

Lehman, F. K. 1973. Syllable structure, tone, and the theory of 
phonological conspiracies. Issues in linguistics: papers in honor 
of Henry and Renee Kahane, ed. by Braj Kachru et al., 515-547. 
Urbana: University of Illinois Press. 


Bennett: lambicity in Thai 5 7 

McCarthy, John, & Alan Prince. 1986. Prosodic morphology. Uni- 
versity of Massachusetts and Brandeis University, MS. 

. 1993a. Generalized alignment. University of Massachusetts and 

Rutgers University, MS. 

. 1993b. Prosodic morphology I. University of Massachusetts and 

Rutgers University, MS. 

Prince, Alan. 1990. Quantitative consequences of rhythmic organiza- 
tion. CLS 26: Papers from the 26th Regional Meeting of the 
Chicago Linguistic Society, vol. 2: Parasession on the syllable in 
phonetics and phonology, ed. by Michael Ziolkowski, Manuela 
Noske & Karen Deaton, pp. 357-398. Chicago: Chicago Linguistic 

, & Paul Smolensky. 1993. Optimality theory. Department of 

Linguistics, Rutgers University and Department of Computer 
Science, University of Colorado, MS. 

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phology and reduplication. University of Arizona Ph.D. disserta- 

UDOM Warothammasikkhadit. 1967. Some phonological rules of Thai. 
Journal of the American Orientalist Society 87.541-574. 




Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 

Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Deborah Milam Berkley 
Northwestern University 

English has OCP effects on identical consonants sepa- 
rated by a suffix boundary and a vowel, as well as on ho- 
morganic consonants separated by a vowel within 
monomorphemic words. These effects are gradient, not ab- 
solute: violations occur but are statistically underrepre- 
sented, and are sensitive to the stringwise distance between 
the consonants. An Optimality Theory treatment of the data 
is examined; it is found that variable constraint rankings 
are needed, but that the variable rankings must be tied to 
specific lexical items, creating a stipulative and complicated 

1. Introduction 

The Obligatory Contour Principle, or OCP, has been defined by 
McCarthy (1988:88) as shown in (1): 

(1) Adjacent identical elements are prohibited. 

This paper presents evidence for an OCP effect that occurs in 
English across morpheme boundaries, affecting consonants that are 
separated by a vowel. This effect is similar to that found in 
monomorphemic monosyllables (Berkley 1994). 

The major empirical finding, a general restriction on cooccur- 
rence of homorganic consonants separated by a short vowel in 
English, is true both across suffix boundaries, and also within 
monomorphemic monosyllables (Berkley 1994), where in the past it 
has been assumed that homorganic, and even identical, consonants 
cooccur freely (Sanchez 1990, Davis 1991, Lamontagne 1993). The 
effect is weakened in proportion to the amount of material interven- 
ing between the two homorganic consonants. 

In the next section I will present the data on which the study is 
based. In Section 3 I will discuss some of the theoretical implications 
of the data. Section 4 will contain an Optimality Theory analysis of 
the data, together with a critique of that analysis. It will be seen that, 
although the insight of Optimality Theory that constraints may be 
violable is useful in analyzing gradient OCP effects, ultimately this 
Optimality Theory analysis is unable to handle that kind of data. 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

2. The data 

2.1. The OCP in English monomorphemic monosyllables. 

Berkley 1994 presented gradient OCP effects within monomorphemic 
monosyllables in English. Although, as was mentioned above, it is 
generally assumed that monosyllables with homorganic consonants 
occur freely, statistical analysis of these words shows that they are 
below expected levels of occurrence, as shown in Table 1. That is, 
although monosyllables containing two homorganic consonants sepa- 
rated by a vowel (such as king /klr)/ or skunk /sk^r]k/) do occur 
their number is lower than would be expected if the consonant pairs 
in monosyllables were distributed at random according to the fre- 
quency of each place of articulation in onset or rime. Note that coro- 
nals also participate in this underrepresentation. Coronals are di- 
vided into separate identity classes for obstruents and sonorants; 
such a division has also been used elsewhere for other languages, for 
example by Padgett 1991 or Pierrehumbert 1993. 

Table 1: Distribution in monosyllables of consonant pairs 
separated by exactly one segment 







/skAT^k / 




cor. son. 



2 6 












6 7 









cor. son 



9 4 



















(N=1258; Chi square = 118.11, p < .00001) 

Monosyllables with homorganic consonants separated by more 
than one segment, whether they are all vowels or some combination 
of vowels and consonants, are also below expected levels of occur- 
rence. Table 2 shows the ratio of actual occurrences of homorganic 
consonant pairs to the number that would be expected if they oc- 
curred at random. The ratios are categorized by place of articulation 
and by the number of segments intervening between the homorganic 
consonants. A lower ratio means a stronger OCP effect, since in a 
lower ratio the observed value is small relative to the expected 




















Berkley: The OCP and gradient data 6 1 

Table 2: Ratio of observed values to expected values for 
homorganic consonant pairs 

number of intervening segments 

one two three four or mo re 
cor, obs. 
cor, son, 

The general finding evidenced in Table 2 is that the underrepre- 
sentation of homorganic consonants in monomorphemic monosylla- 
bles decreases as distance between them increases. 

2.2. The OCP in English suffixed words 

The OCP effect in monomorphemic monosyllables was originally 
found in the context of exploring the possibility of an OCP effect 
across suffix boundaries in English. In a collection of words ending in 
-ity from several on-line dictionaries and corpora, it was observed 
that very few of the stems end in /t/.2 Other factors that might ac- 
count for such a gap were explored. These factors included the lati- 
nate/nonlatinate status of the stem {-ity does not generally attach to 
nonlatinate stems); undesirable phonological effects (such as stress 
shift) that might make speakers prefer to use -ness; blocking of an 
-ity word by some other already existing word; and the number of 
syllables in the stem. 

In order to find out if these other factors could account for the 
observed lack of -ity words with stems ending in /t/, statistical anal- 
ysis was done on the word list, with the words divided by whether 
or not they took -ity or -ness. (Some stems took both suffixes, and 
thus were included in both categories.) Very few nonlatinate stems 
take -ity (out of 1257 words with -ity.. only 11 have nonlatinate 
stems). So the other factors would only be relevant in the context of 
latinate stems, which occur freely with both suffixes. The two cate- 
gories of stems (those that could take -ity, and those that could take 
-ness) were accordingly reduced to only their latinate members. The 
two resulting categories were then tested for the statistical signifi- 
cance of whether or not the stems ended in /t/. The results are 
shown in Table 3, where it can be seen that stems ending in /t/ are 
highly underrepresented with -ity. 

Table 3: Distribution of latinate stems by suffix 

stem ends in /t/ stem doesn't end in /t/ 

-ity 3 1243 

78.8 1167.2 

-ness only 119 5 6 3 

43.2 638.8 

(N=1928; Chi square = 220.19, p <.00001) 

6 2 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

Similar tests, controlling for each of the other factors mentioned 
above, were also done. In each case no significance was found for any 
other factor. For example, a statistical test was run controlling for 
whether or not stress shift would be caused if -ity were affixed. It 
was found that stems taking -ity and also ending in /t/ are under- 
represented both when stress shift would occur, and also when it 
would not (although the underrepresentation is not statistically sig- 
nificant in the former case). Therefore the underrepresentation of 
stems ending in /t/ that take -ity cannot be related to stress shift. 

Under the hypothesis that this underrepresentation was an OCP 
effect, words ending in other English suffixes were collected from 
two on-line dictionaries, and the resulting word lists were examined 
to see if there was any restriction on the acceptability of stems end- 
ing in a suffix's first consonant. It was found that many English suf- 
fixes avoid stems whose last consonant is identical to the first conso- 
nant of the suffix when the two identical consonants, on either side 
of the morpheme boundary, would be separated at most by a vowel 
if affixation occurred (see Appendix.) For example, out of 118 stems 
that take the suffix -ish, none ends in /s/; *fishish is an unacceptable 
word, as opposed to fishy. Similarly, scale does not take the suffix -al, 
but rather its allomorph -ar, to form scalar instead of scalal.^ 

In summary, the data show that OCP effects are found in English 
across suffix boundaries as well as in monomorphemic monosyl- 

I will now turn to a discussion of the theoretical issues raised by 
the data. 

3. Theoretical issues 

3.1. Intervening feature specifications. 

In much current literature, it is assumed that the OCP applies solely 
to segments or feature specifications that are strictly adjacent on 
some tier (e.g. McCarthy 1988). In particular, the OCP has often been 
held to apply to consonants separated by a vowel only in languages 
with nonconcatenative morphology, such as Semitic languages. This is 
because it is the nonconcatenative morphology of such languages that 
motivates the separation of consonant and vowel melodies onto dif- 
ferent tiers. 

In languages with concatenative morphology, consonants sepa- 
rated by a vowel are not held to be adjacent for purposes of the OCP, 
since there is presumed to be no relevant reason to represent conso- 
nant melodies on a different tier from that of the vowels. Thus in 
Cambodian, clusters consisting of homorganic consonants are forbid- 
den, but homorganic consonants separated by a vowel occur freely 
(Yip 1989).4 

Yip 1989 discusses the fact that cooccurrence restrictions in 
different languages vary in whether the two segments in question 
are required to be adjacent stringwise, or merely at the root node, or 

Berkley: The OCP and gradient data 6 3 

just present within the same morpheme. However, she argues that 'at 
some level adjacency is always involved, and that apparent non-ad- 
jacent instances always involve separation of consonant and vowel 
melodies underlyingly....' (Yip 1989:352). 

The data presented here do not support this view. In the English 
case, identical, or even merely homorganic, consonants are underrep- 
resented when separated by a vowel. The OCP apparently considers 
identical consonants in a CVC sequence to be adjacent enough to be 
undesirable. According to Yip, this should indicate that English has 
underlying separation of consonant and vowel melodies. However, an 
OCP effect depending critically upon non-separation of consonant and 
vowel melodies has been claimed for English: the case of the English 
plural, third person singular present tense, and possessive mor- 
phemes, and the English past tense morpheme (Yip 1988). These 
morphemes are pronounced as a single /z/ or /d/ respectively 
(without taking into account voicing assimilation), except when the 
stem ends in a 'like coronal' (a sibilant in the first case, an oral stop 
in the second). In that event, a vowel is inserted between the two 
consonants, as in (2). Crucially, it is the presence of the vowel that 
keeps the word from being an OCP violation. 

(2) /wiz/ + Izl -> /wlz9z/ /bAd/ + /d/ -> /bAdad/ 

whiz / pi. bud / past 

'whizzes' 'budded' 

Separation of consonant and vowel melodies appears therefore 
to be orthogonal to the way the OCP works. 

To account for OCP effects across a vowel, it might seem that the 
standard assumption of privative articulator features on individual 
tiers (e.g. McCarthy 1988, Clements & Hume to appear) would be 
useful. If place features are indeed privative, and the OCP is active in 
English in prohibiting like adjacent place-of-articulation features, 
then words like "^beb have two adjacent specifications for [labial]. The 
intervening vowel is not a problem; the OCP is automatically able to 
see past it. Privative tiers for place features would also explain how 
words like *bleb and cling can be OCP violations. In *bleb, no [labial] 
specification intervenes between the [labial] specifications of the two 
/b/'s, and in cling no [dorsal] specification intervenes between the 
[dorsal] specifications of the /k/ and /t)/. 

However, while privative features might explain why the place 
features of nonadjacent consonants constitute an OCP violation, an- 
other aspect of the data is left unaccounted for. This is the fact that 
the OCP effect loses strength as more and more segments intervene 
between the homorganic consonants. If the OCP is only looking at the 
articulator tiers, it should not be able to see that any segments inter- 
vene at all; the two [coronal] features in sit /sW and swift /swift/ 
should be equally adjacent, as shown: 

6 4 Studies in tiie Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1 994) 

(3) sit swift 

I [Vplace] I I I [Vplace] | j 

I I II [labial] | 

I I I [dorsal] | 

[coronal] [coronal] [coronal] [coronal] 

Yet words such as sit are more highly underrepresented than 
words such as swift (Table 2). Privative features inay thus also be ir- 
relevant to the way the OCP works. Strict adjacency on a single tier is 
not sufficient to explain the effects of distance, nor does it seem to be 
necessary in order for the OCP to notice two identical or similar 
items. This idea gains support from Bybee & Slobin 1982, who pre- 
sent evidence that verbs ending in coronal stops are underrepre- 
sented with the regular past tense morpheme -ed, despite the fact 
that schwa is inserted in such cases. For example, many verbs ending 
in /t/ or /d/, such as hit or bid, undergo no phonetic change to form 
the past tense. So although the insertion of schwa may be a way of 
'rescuing' a word that would otherwise constitute an OCP violation, 
the fact that forms such as budded are underrepresented indicates 
that two /d/'s separated by a schwa are still close enough to each 
other to be themselves OCP violations. 

Furthermore, Pierrehumbert 1993 shows that nonadjacent ele- 
ments may exhibit an OCP effect even across intervening feature 
specifications on the same tier. Arabic has a strong OCP effect on 
identical consonants and a somewhat weaker OCP effect on noniden- 
tical homorganic consonants. ^ One aspect of the OCP effects is that 
root morphemes with two identical consonants separated by a third 
different consonant are underrepresented, indicating that the OCP 
notices the two identical consonants. Since an OCP effect against 
identical segments targets segments that are identical on every tier, 
an intervening segment with any distinct feature specification ought 
to block this 'total' OCP, or at least reduce its strength to that of the 
OCP effect on place of articulation alone. However, verbal roots with 
two identical [-sonorant] consonants separated by a [+sonorant] con- 
sonant are underrepresented, and the effect is stronger than that on 
two homorganic but nonidentical [-sonorant] consonants separated 
by a [-(-sonorant] consonant. So the intervening feature specification is 
not enough to block the OCP on total identity. ^ 

Because of such findings, the assumption that the OCP applies 
only to adjacent specifications on the same tier must be reexamined. 
It is apparent that the OCP is more complex than has been previously 
assumed. One hypothesis might be that the OCP can also sense pho- 
netic timing, and that at least two factors, adjacent identical feature 
specifications and phonetic adjacency, are crucial to OCP violations. 
Perceptual similarity (as argued in Pierrehumbert 1993) may also 
turn out to be a factor. Further research in this area is needed. 

Berkley: The OCP and gradient data 6 5 

3.2. The OCP and underspecification of coronals. 

An additional theoretical implication of the data concerns the under- 
specification of coronals. This is because words with two coronal con- 
sonants that are relatively adjacent to each other are underrepre- 
sented in English, as shown by the data in Table 2. Although coronals 
are less underrepresented than labials and dorsals, they follow the 
same general pattern of decreasing underrepresentation as distance 
between the consonants increases. This underrepresentation means 
that these consonants must be specified for coronal place of articula- 
tion, since the OCP can see that both consonants have the same place 
specification. "7 The data thus present a challenge to theories relying 
on underspecification of [coronal], and provide support to theories 
featuring full specification, as in Broe 1993.^ 

I will now turn to an attempt to treat the data with an Opti- 
mality Theory analysis. 

4. An Optimality Theory treatment of the data 

4.1. Optimality Theory and the OCP. 

Optimality Theory (Prince & Smolensky 1993) is a theory of con- 
straint interaction involving violable constraints. There are neither 
rules nor derivations as usually understood. Instead, a set of univer- 
sal constraints is ranked by each language from most important to 
least. A constraint may be violated when its satisfaction would de- 
pend on violation of a higher-ranked constraint. 

Surface forms arise in the following manner. A component of the 
grammar called Gen associates an abstract representation of a lin- 
guistic object (such as a morpheme or a syllable) with all possible 
surface outputs. These outputs are evaluated in parallel by H-eval, a 
function that compares the outputs for their success in satisfying the 
constraints. If an output violates a constraint, it receives a mark that 
indicates this. Any outputs that violate the highest constraint are dis- 
carded, and the remaining outputs are evaluated against the next 
highest constraint. Evaluation continues until only one output 'wins'. 
Lower-ranked constraints do not contribute anything to the evalua- 
tion if they are too low to make a difference. That is, unlike connec- 
tionist models, Optimality Theory does not allow candidate outputs to 
compete on scores based on their total satisfaction of all constraints, 
but only on their satisfaction of constraints high enough to be rele- 
vant to the particular evaluation in progress. 

To account for the OCP effect found, we can use the constraint in 


(4) OCP(Place) 

Adjacent homorganic consonants are prohibited. 

In order to explain the effects of distance shown in Table 2, this 
constraint needs to be exploded into a family of related binary con- 
straints, as is often done in Optimality Theory. In this case, the 

66 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

OCP(Place) family will consist of member constraints that each deal 
with homorganic consonants separated by a specific number of seg- 
ments. For example, the constraint 0CP(Place)-2 will prohibit ho- 
morganic consonants separated by two segments. 

Interacting with this constraint family are two other constraints that 
play a large role in Optimality Theory: Fill and Parse, defined in (5) 
and (6): 

(5) FILL: Syllable positions must be filled with underlying 

segments (Prince & Smolensky 1993:85). 

(6) PARSE: Underlying segments must be parsed into syllable 

structure (Prince & Smolensky 1993:85). 

In order for words containing OCP violations, such as /tat/ (tot), 
to survive, OCP(Place) must be ranked lower than both Fill and Parse. 
The constraint tableau in (7) illustrates this. 

(7) Fill Parse OCP(Place)l 0CP(Place)2 
-> tat * 

ta t *! * 

ta<t> *! 

4.2. Variable rankings. 

Note that it is the violability of constraints in Optimality Theory that 
allows us to account for the occurrence of forms containing OCP vio- 
lations. However, there are problems. The most notable concerns the 
fact that monosyllables with homorganic consonants are underrepre- 
sented. The ranking in (7) explains the existence of such words, but it 
does not explain their underrepresentation. 

One way of accommodating the Optimality Theory account to 
this fact would involve allowing constraint rankings to be variable 
(as in Kiparsky 1993). That is, instead of statements such as 'The 
constraint OCP(Place) dominates the constraint Fill', a language may 
need to use statements such as 'The constraint OCP(Place) tends to 
dominate the constraint Fill'. 

Such 'soft' constraint rankings would work in the following 
manner for the OCP effect under discussion. For a minority of inputs, 
OCP(Place) will be dominated by Fill and Parse, as shown in (7), but 
most of the time OCP(Place) will dominate one or both of them. When 
the more usual ranking is in effect, the outcome for an input mono- 
syllable with two homorganic consonants, such as /beb/ (*beb), will 
be as shown in the following tableau: 

(8) OCP(Place)l-lab 0CP(Place)2-lab Fill 
beb *! 

-> be b * * 

When Fill is ranked below the OCP, a parse with an epenthetic seg- 
ment (such as perhaps [beib] babel) will beat the more faithful parse 

Berkley: The OCP and gradient data 6 7 

[beb]. Assuming that /beb/ really is the input for babe, this is the 
desired outcome. 

4.3. Optimality Theory, the OCP, and English suffixed words. 

It may be objected that constraints are not the proper way to handle 
lexical data in Optimality Theory, and that instead the OCP effect is in 
place before the candidates are sent to H-eval by Gen. However, the 
OCP effect found in this study concerns not only monomorphemic 
monosyllables, but also suffixed words. Matters pertaining to affixa- 
tion are regularly handled by constraints in Optimality Theory 
(Prince & Smolensky 1993). But the English heteromorphemic data 
poses even greater problems for the Optimality Theory account pre- 
sented here. 

Although most English suffixes avoid stems ending in the same 
consonant as the first consonant of the suffix, words such as chastity 
and molal do occur. Ranking OCP(Place) below Parse and Fill accounts 
for the occurrence of these forms, as it did for words such as tot. 
However, a change in rankings does not account for their underrep- 
resentation, as it did in the case of monomorphemic monosyllables. 
This is because forms such as *'distincteety' / do not 
occur at all, as they would if OCP(Place) were ranked above Fill (in a 
manner analogous to (8)). 

If, in order to account for the underrepresentation of words like 
*beb, some of the constraints in the OCP(Place) family must some- 
times be ranked above Fill, then something else must be preventing 
words such as *'distincteety' 'from occurring for input /distinct -i- ity/, 
or indeed, preventing any output at all from occurring for this input, 
or for inputs such as /scale -t- al/ (compare molal and scalar). Prince & 
Smolensky 1993 claim that when something is absolutely ill-formed, 
it means that the 'null parse' (no phonetic realization at all of the in- 
put) has actually been the optimal candidate. Thus it is necessary to 
find a constraint ranked even higher than Fill, Parse, and OCP(Place), 
which is violated by all parses of /distinct + ity/ but which is not vio- 
lated by the null parse, or by outputs such as [tat] for input /tat/ 
(see (7) above). So far the only constraint violated by *distinctity is 
OCP(Place)l, which is also violated by [tat]. Since [tat] is the correct 
output, OCP(Place)l cannot be the constraint we need. 

One way to rescue this analysis is to posit another family of OCP 
constraints that refers specifically to OCP violations across a suffix 

(9) OCP(Place)-SUFFIX (OCP(Place)-Sfx): 

Identical consonants separated by a suffix boundary are 

If OCP(Place)-Sfx is ranked above Parse, then the null parse will 
beat any parse of /distinct + ity/, no matter what the ranking of 
OCP(Place)-Sfx is relative to Fill or OCP(Place). This is shown in the 
following tableau. 

6 8 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

(10) OCP(Place)-Sfx Parse 

1 2 

-> <distinctity> * 

distinct<i>ty *! * 

distinctity *! 

distinct ity * 


In order to account for the occurrence of forms like chastity, 
OCP(Place)-Sfx must occasionally be ranked below both Fill and 

(11) Fill Parse OCP(Place)-Sfx OCP(Place) 

1 2 12 





■> chastity 

chast ity 


If we wish to accept variable constraint rankings, we have now 
arrived at what seems to be a technically workable, though stipula- 
tive, solution to account for all the data in this study. However, this 
solution is not even that good. For one thing, variable constraint 
rankings will pose the problem of ensuring that the rankings are the 
same every day for every speaker for every particular input. That is, 
the null parse would always have to be the optimal output of 
/distinct + ity/ for every English speaker on every day. So, when the 
input /distinct + ity/ enters Gen, the constraints would always have 
to be ranked such that OCP(Place)-Sfx dominates Parse, but when- 
ever the input /chaste + ity/ enters Gen, since chastity is always the 
optimal output. Parse and Fill would always have to be ranked above 
OCP(Place)-Sfx for every English speaker on every day. Otherwise for 
some speakers *distinctity would be well-formed, and some might 
find chastity ill-formed. 

Furthermore, having separate constraints, one for the OCP effect 
in monomorphemic monosyllables and one for suffixed words, misses 
the generalization that the effect of them both is generally the same — 
avoidance of similar elements in proximity. In this respect, Opti- 
mality Theory does not represent an advance over the theory of lexi- 
cal phonology. Linguists working in lexical phonology noted that lexi- 
cal phonological rules tended to give to derived forms the same £ 
phonological regularities already found in underived forms. They ■ 
therefore worked towards unifying these two types of phenomena. ^ 
For example, Kiparsky 1982 proposes that morpheme structure rules 
and phonological rules are really all one type of object: lexical 
phonological rules. He argues that what appear to be morpheme 
structure rules are merely the feature-filling applications of phono- 
logical rules to underspecified lexical items. Later in the phonology, 
the same rules may apply in a feature-changing manner to derived 

Berkley: The OCP and gradient data 6 9 

The Optimality Theory account presented here needs a much 
more complicated grammar. To handle the gradient OCP data, the 
Optimality Theory analysis needs one constraint family avoiding 
identical elements across a suffix boundary, and another avoiding 
similar elements in monomorphemic monosyllables. These constraint 
families must also be ranked independently of each other, with inde- 
pendent ranking variations. It is more difficult to see within Opti- 
mality Theory that the constraint family affecting monomorphemes 
and the constraint family affecting suffixed words are actually two 
different facets of the OCP than it was to have unified effects on both 
monomorphemic and derived forms within lexical phonology. ^ Opti- 
mality Theory researchers would do well to follow the lead of lexical 
phonologists and examine the representation and cause of the re- 
semblance between morpheme structure conditions and the outcome 
of phonological rules on derived forms. 

5. Conclusion 

The data presented in this paper provide evidence for a revised un- 
derstanding of the OCP, as argued in Berkley 1994. Although the 
statement in (1), repeated here as (12), is generally accepted, it is in- 
correct in two respects. 

(12) Adjacent identical elements are prohibited. 

First, identical elements need not be adjacent in order to be no- 
ticed by the OCP. Instead, the OCP suppresses identical elements sep- 
arated by intervening segments, and even by a morpheme boundary 
in addition to an intervening segment. Second, the cooccurrence of 
similar elements is not prohibited. Instead, relatively adjacent iden- 
tical elements do cooccur, but the number of such occurrences is 
lower than expected. 

The debate between privative and equipollent features was ar- 
gued to be orthogonal to this type of OCP effect. That is, although pri- 
vative features can explain OCP violations across intervening seg- 
ments, they do not explain why the underrepresentation of OCP-vio- 
lating consonant pairs decreases as the stringwise distance between 
them increases. There are, instead, hints in the data that the OCP may 
refer to phonetic adjacency in time. The relationship of the OCP to 
phonetic representations, and to perception of similarity, as explored 
in Pierrehumbert 1993, is undoubtedly in need of further study. 

The Optimality Theory analysis presented in this paper has 
shown that constraint violability, an important feature of Optimality 
Theory, is useful in accounting for OCP violations. 

However, it is not Optimality Theory specifically, but the concept 
of violable constraints, that is supported by this paper, although Op- 
timality Theory is indeed based upon such a concept. The Optimality 
Theory analysis given above was unable to account for the underrep- 
resentation of words containing OCP violations without a modification 
to the theory in the form of violable rankings of constraints, a modi- 

7 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

fication which was shown to be problematic. And even the reranking 
solution was unable to account for the OCP effects on suffixed words 
without positing a separate OCP constraint, also subject to reranking. 
This separation of constraints misses the generalization that the suf- 
fixed words and the monomorphemic words are both subject to the 
OCP. Moreover, since ranking of constraints is how Optimality Theory 
explains linguistic phenomena, arbitrary variation in the rankings is 
actually inimical to Optimality Theory. It appears from the data pre- 
sented here that Optimality Theory's inviolable constraint rankings 
are inadequate for gradient data. 


* I would like to thank Janet Pierrehumbert for much valuable 
discussion and advice. This material is based upon work supported 
under a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship. 

1 In Table 2, 'n/a' indicates that no occurrences were found. 

2 This phenomenon had already been noted by Anshen et al. 

3 Statistics were not done on these data for the present paper. In 
order to have statistics similar to those for -ity and -ness, it would be 
necessary to again compare two suffixes similar in meaning, subcate- 
gorization, and selectional restrictions, but with different first conso- 
nants. Such a study could be undertaken, but would require much 
time to sort out other factors such as latinateness. It is thus left for 
future research. 

4 Yip does not state that she has done a statistical analysis on 
Cambodian consonant cooccurrence. If such an analysis has not been 
done, it is possible that the cooccurrence of homorganic consonants is 
not completely free in Cambodian, but is instead underrepresented 
as in English. 

5 Pierrehumbert 1993 actually argues that all Arabic's OCP ef- 
fects are due to one unified OCP whose strength increases with both 
increased proximity and increased perceived similarity. The limiting 
case of similarity is total identity; thus the OCP effect on identical 
consonants is strongest. 

6 See also Pierrehumbert (in press), where it is shown that me- 
dial clusters in monomorphemic words of English are underrepre- 
sented if the first and third consonants are identical. This paper 
provides additional evidence for nonadjacent OCP effects in English. 
Moreover, the paper contains experimental evidence for the 
'psychological reality' of the effect. 

7 Paradis & Prunet 1991 argue that an OCP effect involving 
coronal place of articulation does not necessarily entail that [coronal] 
is specified. Rather, they suggest that in languages such as Arabic, 
where the OCP disallows two coronals in the same root, the OCP con- 

Berkley: The OCP and gradient data 7 1 

siders two adjacent gaps on the place tier to be a violation (see also a 
similar suggestion in Kiparsky 1985). They reconcile this assumption 
with the claim of Davis 1991 that English /s/CVC words with homor- 
ganic consonants are underrepresented only when the consonants 
are not coronal, by suggesting that whether or not the OCP notices 
adjacent gaps is a paramaterizable option, and that English does not 
take the gap option. For arguments against gaps as 'features', see 
Broe 1993. 

8 See McCarthy & Taub 1992 for further arguments against 
coronal underspecification. 

9 Nonetheless, it appears that lexical phonology is also unable to 
account for the specific OCP effects presented here. This is because 
the effects of the OCP cannot be represented as the output of rewrite 
rules, since there is no one way of resolving an OCP violation. That is, 
an OCP violation may be resolved in many ways, for instance by 
epenthesis between the offending consonants, by deletion of one of 
the offending consonants, or by blocking the violating form alto- 


Anshen, Frank, Mark Aronoff, Roy J. Byrd, & Judith L. Klavans. 1986. 
The role of etymology and word length in English word forma- 
tion. Proceedings of the Second Annual Conference of the UW 
Centre for the New Oxford English Dictionary: Advances in lexi- 
cology, 17-27. Waterloo, Canada. 

Berkley, Deborah Milam. 1994. Variability and Obligatory Contour 
Principle effects. To appear in Proceedings of the 30th annual 
meeting of the Chicago Linguistic Society, part two: The parases- 
sion on variation and linguistic theory. Chicago: Chicago 
Linguistic Society. 

Broe, Michael. 1993. Specification theory: the treatment of redun- 
dancy in generative phonology. University of Edinburgh Ph.D. 

Bybee, Joan L., & Dan L Slobin. 1982. Rules and schemas in the devel- 
opment and use of the English past tense. Language 58:2.265-89. 

Clements, G. N., & Elizabeth v. Hume. To appear. The internal organi- 
zation of speech sounds. Handbook of phonological theory, ed. by 
John A. Goldsmith. Oxford: Basil Blackwell. 

Davis, Stuart. 1991. Coronals and the phonotactics of nonadjacent 
consonants in English. Phonetics and Phonology 2:49-60. 

Kiparsky, Paul. 1982. From cyclic phonology to lexical phonology. 
The structure of phonological representations (part I), ed. by H. 
van der Hulst & N. Smith, 131-175. Dordrecht: Foris Publications. 

. 1985. Some consequences of lexical phonology. Phonology 

yearbook 2, ed. by C. Ewen & J. Anderson, 85-138. Cambridge: 
Cambridge University Press. 

72 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

. 1993. Variable rules. Paper presented at Rutgers Optimality 

Workshop- 1, Rutgers University. 

KUCERA, Henry, & W. Nelson Francis. 1967. Computational analysis of 
present-day American English. Providence: Brown University 
Press. Cited in the MRC psycholinguistic database. 

Lamontagne, Gregory A. 1993. Syllabification and consonant cooccur- 
rence conditions. University of Massachusetts Ph.D. dissertation. 

McCarthy, John J. 1988. Feature geometry and dependency: a re- 
view. Phonetica 43:84-108. 

, & Alison Taub. 1992. Review of Carole Paradis & Jean-Francois 

Prunet, 1991, The special status of coronals: internal and exter- 
nal evidence (Phonetics and Phonology 2). Phonology 9:363-70. 

MRC psycholinguistic database: a machine usable dictionary. 1987. 
Oxford Text Archive. Oxford: Oxford University Computing 

Padgett, Jaye. 1991. OCP Subsidiary features. In Proceedings of NELS 
21. Amherst, Massachusetts: Graduate Student Association, 
University of Massachusetts. 

Paradis, Carole, & Jean-Frangois Prunet. 1991. Introduction: asym- 
metry and visibility in consonant articulations. Phonetics and 
Phonology 2:1-28. 

Pierrehumbert, Janet. 1993. Dissimilarity in the Arabic verbal roots. 
In Proceedings of NELS 23. Amherst, Massachusetts: Graduate 
Student Association, University of Massachusetts. 

. In press. Syllable structure and word structure. Papers in labo- 
ratory phonology III, ed. by P. Keating. Cambridge: Cambridge 
University Press. 

Prince, Alan, & Paul Smolensky. 1993. Optimality theory: constraint 
interaction in generative grammar. Department of Linguistics, 
Rutgers University, and Department of Computer Science, 
University of Colorado at Boulder, MS. 

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pers in linguistics 15:7-18. 

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rules: a loss of identity. Linguistic Inquiry 19:1.65-100. 

1989. Feature geometry and cooccurrence restrictions. 
Phonology 6:349-74. 

Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Rakesh Mohan Bhatt 

University of Tennessee, Knoxville 

1.0 Introduction 

In Kashmiri finite clauses we find subjects marked by one of the 
three Cases: nominative (la), dative (lb), and ergative (Ic). 

(1) a. lark ch-u yi kitaab par-aan 

boy(N) prs-m,sg this(A) book(A,f,sg) read-NPerf 
'The boy is reading this book.' 

b. lark-as ch-a yi kitaab khar-aan 
boy(D) prs-f,sg this(N) book(N,f,sg) hate-NPerf 
'The boy hates this book.' 

c. laRk-an ch-a yi kitaab par-mets 

boy(E) prs-f,sg this(N) book(N,f,sg) read-Perf Part-f,sg 
'The boy read this book.' 

The evidence for the subjecthood of the NP "boy" in (la) — (Ic) is well- 
established [Control PRO, ECM, S-S-R (Bhatt 1993)]. The different 
instantiations of Case is explained by assuming that both (lb) and 
(Ic) are unaccusative structures, and that dative and ergative are 
lexically-assigned by the verb; the nominative Case in (la) is 
assigned by Infl in SPEC-HEAD configuration (Bhatt 1993).' This Case- 
theoretic account subsumes two different D-Structures for (1): (2a) 
for (la) and (2b) for (lb and Ic). 

(2) a. [cp [c [ip [r [vp [vp laRk [y yi kitaab paraan] chu]]]]]] (=la) 
b- [cp [c [ip [r [vp [vp e [y laRkas/laRkan yi kitaab 

kharaan/parmets] cha]]]]]] (=lb, Ic) 

The proposal (2b), although widely assumed in Indo-Aryan 
Syntax within GB framework (cf. Mahajan 1990), is fraught with 
serious problems. Assuming the same D-Structure (2b) for both 
ergative and dative subject constructions leaves several of their 
distributional properties unexplained. First, given (2b), it is not clear 
why dative Case-marked subjects cannot passivize whereas ergative 
Case-marked subjects can. In fact, with respect to passivization, 
ergative subject construction patterns with nominative subject 
constructions; they both can have passive counterparts. Second, it is 
not clear why nominalization of ergative subject constructions is 
possible, but nominalization of dative subject constructions is not. 
And finally, third, it is not clear why ergative subject constructions 
can be causativized by a general process of suffixing the causative 
morpheme -inaav to the main verb whereas dative subject 
constructions fail to undergo causativization. 

74 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

In this paper I follow Grimshaw (1990) and claim that ergative 
subjects are external (Agents) arguments generated as D-Structure 
subjects in the same way as other agentive subjects. I propose (2a) to 
be the D-Structure of ergative constructions in Kashmiri, which gives 
a straightforward account of why ergative subjects and dative sub- 
jects behave differently with respect to syntactic operations such as 
passivization, nominalization, and causativization. I will also argue 
that ergative Case is not lexically assigned by the verb, but rather by 
an aspectual (functional) head. The paper is organized in the follow- 
ing manner: First, in section 2.0, I discuss data to show that ergative 
constructions behave differently than dative constructions with re- 
spect to passivization, nominalization, and causativization. In section 
3.0, I use Grimshaw's (1990) framework to account for the data in 
section 2.0. In section 4.0, I propose a more articulated theory of 
Case, following some recent works of Sigurd sson (1991), Marantz 
(1991), Cowper (1988), among others. In section 5.0, I draw conclu- 
sions and explore some consequences of my proposal. 

2.0 The data 

2. 1 Passivization 

The passive in Kashmiri is expressed by suffixing the passive mor- 
pheme i-ni ) to the verb root, and adding a periphrastic auxiliary 
yun "to come," as shown in the active-passive pair below. The 
oblique by phrase in Kashmiri is preferably omitted. 

(3) a. laRk ch-u kor-yan kitaab div-aan 

boy(N) prs-m,sg girls(D) book (A,f,sg) give-NPerf 
'The boy gives a book to the girls.' 

b. kitaab ch-a kor-yan di-ni yiv-aan 
book(N,f,sg) prs-f,sg girls(D) give-Pass came-NPerf 
(laRk-as athyi) 

boy(D) by 

'The book was given to the girls (by the boy). '2 

c. kor-yan ch-a kitaab di-ni yiv-aan 
girls(D) prs-f,sg book(N,f,sg) give-Pass came-NPerf 
(laRk-as athyi) 

boy(D) by 

'The girls were given the books (by the boy).' 

Kachru (1973:353) notes the existence of intransitive passives in 
Kashmiri. It turns out that only unergative verbs can passivize — giv- 
ing rise to the so-called impersonal passive (-looking) constructions. 
However, unaccusative verbs do not passivize, as the contrast 
between (4) and (5) shows. 3 

Bhatt: On experiencers and subjects of perfect predicates 7 5 

(4) a. laRk oos kamr-as manz nats-aan 

boy(N) was room(D) in dance-NPerf 

'The boy was dancing in the room.' 
b. laRk-as athyi oos kamr-as manz nats-ni yiv-aan 

boy(D) by was room(D) in dance-Pass come-NPerf 
'It was in the room danced by the boy.' 

(5) a. shuryi chl yath umr-yi manz jal-jal baD-aan 

kids are this(D) age(D) in very fast grow-NPerf 

'The kids grow very fast at this age.' 
b. *shury-an athyi chu yath umr-yi manz jal-jal 

kids(D) by is this(D) age(D) in very fast 

baD-ni yiv-aan 

grow-Pass come-NPerf 

'At this age it is by the kids very fast grown '[Lit.: 'At this age 
to the kids comes very fast growth.'] 

A plausible hypothesis to account for the contrast in (4) and (5) is to 
assume that in Kashmiri, operations such as passives require an ex- 
ternal argument. This will straightforwardly explain why passivizing 
an unaccusative verb results in ungrammaticality (5b, above); there 
is no external argument in these structures. 

If the above hypothesis is correct, and assuming dative predi- 
cates to be unaccusatives, we expect constructions with dative Case- 
marked subjects to result in ungrammaticality when they are pas- 
sivized. Indeed, the ungrammaticality of (6b) supports our 

However, constructions with ergative Case-marked subjects can 
easily passivize, as shown in (7). If we maintain our hypothesis, we 
must assume that the subject of the perfect predicate is an external 
argument. Clearly, with respect to passivization, ergative subject con- 
struction patterns with nominative subject constructions (3 above); 
they both can have passive counterparts. 

(6) a. laRk-as ch-a yi kitaab khar-aan 

boy(D) prs-f,sg this book(N,f,sg) hate-NPerf 
'The boy hates this book.' 
b. *yi kitaab ch-a khar-ni yiv-aan 

this(N) book(N,f,sg) prs-f,sg hate-Pass come-NPerf 
'This book is being hated.' 

(7) a. laRk-an par yi kitaab 

boy(E) read-Perf-f,sg this book(N,f,sg) 
'The boy read this book.' 
b. yi kitaab aa-yi par-ni 

this(N) book(N,f,sg) come-Perf-f,sg read-Perf-Pass 
'This book was read.' 

Next we look at some more data which leads to the same conclu- 
sions; that subjects of dative predicates are internal arguments 
whereas subjects of perfect predicates are external arguments. 

76 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

2.2 Nominalization 

One of the most productive ways of deriving nominals from 
verbs is by suffixing the gerundive [-un ] (homophonous with the 
infinitive marker) to the verb root. The resulting deverbal noun 
takes all the arguments taken by the verbs they are derived from. 
Thus, nominalizing (8a) this way yields (8b).4 

(8) a. laRk chu dohay baat gyavaan 

boy(N) prs daily songs sing-NPerf 
'The boy sings songs everyday.' 

b. [laRk-sund dohay baat gyav-un] chu-na mastar-as 
boy(G) daily songs sing-ing prs-Neg teacher(D) 


'The teacher does not like the boy's singing of the songs 

As with passivization, nominalization of ergative predicates is possi- 
ble; I show this in (9a). The nominalization of psych predicates, how- 
ever, yields ungrammaticality; I show this in (9b). 

(9) a. laRk-sanz yi kitaab par-in 

boy-(G) this book read-Nominalizer 
'The boy's reading this book...' 

b. *laRk-sinz yi kitaab khar-in 

boy-(G) this book hate-Nominalizer 
'The boy's hating this book...' 

Once again, to account for the contrast between (8) and (9), we can 
maintain our hypothesis and claim that the underlying structure of 
nominative subject constructions must be the same as ergative sub- 
ject constructions; specifically, that both have an external argument, 
which is lacking in the dative subject constructions. 

And, as a final piece of evidence, 1 provide data from causa- 
tivization in Kashmiri to show that ergative subject constructions 
patterns with nominative subject constructions forcing an account of 
perfect predicates that must assume an underlying structure (2a), 
shown above. 

2.3 Causativization 

In Kashmiri, causative constructions are formed by a general process 
of suffixing the causative morpheme -inaav to the main verb, as 
shown in (10a) and (10b). The causer (generally the agent) has some 
intermediary (causee), marked with the same postposition (athyi 
"by") as the passive ibv-phrase, to actually perform the action for it. 

Bhatt: On experiencers and subjects of perfect predicates 7 7 

(10) a. su ch-u me mastar-as athyi Hindi 

he(N) prs-m,sg me(D) teacher-(D)-by hindi(A) 

'He is having the teacher teach me Hindi.' 
b. su ch-u mohnyu-as-athyi kaam kar-inaav-aan 

he(N) prs-m,sg servant-(D)-by work(A) do-Caus-NPerf 
'He is having the servant do the work.' 

As is the case with other (oblique) adjunct phrases, the oblique 
causee can be omitted; I show this in (11) below. 

(11) su ch-u kaam kar-inaav-aan 
he(N) prs-m,sg work(A) do-Caus-NPerf 
'He is having the work done.' 

The ergative subject constructions can be causativized by a general 
process of suffixing the causative morpheme -inaav to the main verb, 
as shown in (12a), whereas the dative subject constructions fail to 
undergo causativization, as the ungrammaticality of (12b) suggests. 

(12) a. asyi kar-inaav swa laRk-as-athyi kaam 

we(E) do-CAUSE she boy(D)-by work 

'We had her do the work by the boy.' 
b. *asyi khar-inaav swa kuur laRk-as-athyi 
we hate-CAUSE that girl(N) boy(D)-by 
'We had her hated by the boy.' 

I suggest that the contrast in (12a) and (12b) follows from the un- 
derlying structural differences between perfect predicates and da- 
tive predicates; perfect predicates have the structure (2a), whereas 
dative predicates have the structure (2b). 

2.4 Summary 

To sum, I have presented evidence to show that ergative subjects 
and dative subjects behave differently with respect to syntactic 
operations such as passivization, nominalization. and causativization. 
If, as has been previously suggested (Bhatt 1993, 1994, Mahajan 
1990), we posit the same underlying structure for experiencers and 
subjects of perfect predicates, namely, the unaccusative (2b), then 
the data in (4) through (12) receives no explanation, within of course 
the current assumptions of the framework (Chomsky 1986, 1991). In 
the next section I provide an explanation of the differential behavior 
of ergative and dative constructions. 

3 .0 The account 

I explain the data presented in section 2 by hypothesizing that erga- 
tive subject constructions have the same D-Structure as nominative 
subject constructions, i.e., (2a). Assuming Grimshaw's (1990) theory 
of argument structure, I suggest that ergative subjects are "external 
arguments": thematically and aspectually most prominent, with the 
Agent theta-role. The suggestion that ergative subjects are Agents is 

78 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

corroborated by the compatibility of agentive adverbs witli ergative 
and nominative subjects (13a, b), and their inability to occur with 
dative subjects (13c). 

(13) a. laRk-an kar tsuur zaanith-maanith 

boy(E) did-Perf theft(N,f,sg) deliberately 
'The boy stole (something) deliberately (to prove a point).' 

b. laRk ch-u tsuur kar-aan zaanith-maanith 
boy(N) prs-m,sg theft(f,sg) do-NPerf deliberately 
'The boy steals deliberately (to perhaps get attention).' 

c. *laRk-as ch-a swa kuur khar-aan zaanith-maanith 
boy(D) prs-f,sg that(N) girl(N) hate-NPerf deliberately 
'The boy deliberately hates the girl.' 

By assuming the structure (2a) for ergative subject construc- 
tions, a straightforward account of the data (4-12) is possible. 
Following Grimshaw (1990), I propose that the Passive morpheme 
specifies in its argument structure the "suppression" of the external 
argument, which, referred to as a(rgument)-adjuncts (licensed as ar- 
guments but not theta marked), are realized as oblique (by) phrases. 
It follows, then, that the ergative nominal by virtue of being an ex- 
ternal argument, by hypothesis, can be morphologically suppressed 
yielding passive constructions (7). 

Now, external arguments in the theory of Grimshaw (1990) must 
be both thematically as well as aspectually most prominent. Expe- 
riencer subjects of psych predicates may well be thematically most 
prominent arguments, but they are not aspectually most prominent, 
and as such do not qualify for the external argumenthood. The fail- 
ure of Passive of dative subject constructions (6) then follows from 
the fact that psych verbs, as shown in (2b), do not have external 
arguments that can undergo morphologically specified suppression. 

With respect to nominalization possibilities, I suggest that the 
reason ergative, and crucially not dative, subject constructions can 
have nominalized counterparts is that nominalized clauses are pro- 
ductively formed only by the suppression of an external argument 
(cf. Grimshaw 1990: 107-151). This explains the failure of dative 
Case-marked subjects to nominalize since the psych predicates do not 
have argument structures with external arguments. As in Passive, 
only verbs with external arguments (which can be lexically sup- 
pressed) will undergo nominalization. The perfect predicates have an 
external argument, whence the nominalization of these predicates ss 
becomes possible. 

With respect to causativization, we noticed earlier that the 
causee in such constructions, expressed as an oblique adjunct, is an 
agent unaffected by the causing agent. I propose that the causative 
-inaav involves the passivization of the embedded verb (cf. Baker 
1988): The external argument (causee) is supressed and is realized as 
an optional oblique phrase. Ergative constructions can therefore 
causativize for the base verb has an external argument, while the 

Bhatt: On experiencers and subjects of perfect predicates 79 

transitive dative subject constructions fail to causativize because 
they lack an external argument. 

4.0 Ergative case 

So far I have argued that the ergative subject is an external argu- 
ment. But what about its Case? Is it not quirky? I claim that ergative 
Case (assigned only to Agents) is NOT quirky/lexical; it is in fact 
conditioned by factors which are NOT represented in the predicate 
argument structure; factors such as Aspect (or Tense [PAST] in 
Pashto, Kurdish, etc.). I suggest that ergative Case is assigned by the 
functional head, Aspect. This aspect must be specified [+Perf] in order 
to assign ergative Case. In what follows I am going to suggest a pro- 
posal of Case, which is able to account for the Case arrays presented 
in (1). 

It is now fairly well-established that bearing a Grammatical 
Function (abstract Case) and being marked with a particular kind of 
morphological (m-) Case are two different things (Zaenen, Maling and 
Thrainsson 1985 [ZMT], Holmberg 1986, Cowper 1988, Maling and 
Zaenen 1990, SigurSsson 1991, Marantz 1991, Bhatt 1993, 1994). 
This approach to Case is sometimes referred to as "Double Case Ap- 
proach." In other words, I suggest that argument NPs are licensed if 
they have, or, are "checked" for, both abstract Case and morpho- 
logical Case, see (14) below. 

(14) An A-chain is licensed iff: 

(a) it is Case Licensed at LF (i.e., it is assigned abstract Case); 

(b) it is Case Identified before "spell out" (i.e., it is assigned 
morphological (m-) Case). 

Abstract Case licenses lexical argument NPs in the Specs of 
functional heads either before "spell out", formerly S-Structure, or at 
the LF-interface. This is consonant with the minimalist Case-checking 
theory, where grammatical functions are licensed in Specs of AGRs. 
The morphological (m-) Case identifies/specifies the content of the 
Case (="PF Identification"). Verb agreement is, in my theory, a reflex 
of m-Case assignment in Spec-Head configuration of AGR projection. 
This assumption is supported elsewhere in Bhatt (1993, 1994), 
where it is argued that nominative objects, which trigger verb agree- 
ment, must appear outside VP, specifically in the AGRP-Spec. 

With this background, let me explain how the theory works. Fol- 
lowing Travis (1991), I will assume full X'-thcoretic projection of 
aspect (ASPP) within VP (see (16) below). This assumption follows 
from the fact that in Kashmiri, verb incorporates into Aspect. 1 sug- 
gest ASPP-Spec licenses objects (checks abstract Case) at LF. Ac- 
cusative objects in Kashmiri, which do not move overtly in syntax 
(Bhatt 1993, 1994), presumably move to ASPP-Spec at LF to be Case 
licensed. The agentive subject moves via AGRP-Spec triggering 
agreement (m-Case) and lands in the TP-Spec where it is assigned 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

abstract Case. Alternatively, for movement to TP-Spec, I can make 
the standard "minimalist" assumption that Tense in Kashmiri, like 
English, has a strong NP licensing feature, which forces syntactic 
movement of subject to TP-Spec for "checking" purposes. 




ASP [+Perf] 

Getting back to ergative subjects, we noticed earlier that erga- 
tive subjects appear with transitive perfective clauses, such as (Ic) 
above, repeated below as (17). 

(17) laRk-an ch-a yi kitaab par-mets 

boy(E) prs-f,sg this(N) book(N,f,sg) read-Perf Part-f,sg 
'The boy read this book.' 

In (17) I assume that the verb fails to assign morphological accus- 
ative to the object, and the V+Asp complex assigns morphological 
ergative to the Spec of VP, as indicated in (16) above. The object 
moves via ASPP-Spec to AGRP-Spec to get morphological Case, nomi- 
native. As a result of nominative assignment the whole chain is as- 
signed nominative, triggering predicate agreement at the Specs of the 
chain, viz., AGRP and ASPP. 

Now, there may seem to be a correlation between ergative as- 
signment and the lack of accusative assignment, but as it turns out. 


Bhatt: On experiencers and subjects of perfect predicates 81 

perfect predicates do assign morphological accusative to their direct 
complements in Kashmiri. 5 Consider (18), for example: 

(18) a. laRk-an parnaa V kuur hisaab 

boy(E) taught-f,sg girl(N) math(A,m,sg) 
'The boy taught the girl math.' 
b. *laRk-an parnaav hisaab kuur 

boy(E) taught-f,sg math(A,m,sg) girl(N) 
'The boy taught the girl math.' 

The grammaticality contrast between (18a) and (18b) can be ex- 
plained by assuming that the object girl in (18b) is not in a position 
where it can be assigned the morphological nominative, in the AGRP- 
Spec, which is occupied by the accusative object. The structure is 
therefore ruled out due to the lack of morphological Case on the 
object girl. The apparent correlation between ergative subject and 
nonaccusative objects is illusory, and therefore, the claim that perfect 
predicates belong to the unaccusative class of verbs is untenable. 

Although admittedly we do not yet have a theory which distin- 
guishes verbs from perfect participles, at least in terms of categorial 
features, I can only speculate that the perfect morpheme, much like 
the passive morpheme, is able to optionally block the assignment of 
morphological accusative. This property of perfect participles to 
block accusative Case, of course, is, in a sense, lexical. 

Dative case, on the other hand, is lexically-assigned (therefore 
"quirky") to an internal (EXP) argument, which then must move to 
TP-Spec to get abstract Case, whereas the Theme argument must 
move to AGRP to get abstract Case (licensed) as well as morphological 
nominative Case (identified), as shown on the next page in (19). 

5.0. Conclusions 

The proposal outlined above also explains a cross-linguistic general- 
ization that, unlike ergatives, quirky subject Cases are not assigned to 
Agents, but to Experiencers and Themes (Levin and Simpson 1981). I 
have argued that just as certain predicates assign morphological 
accusative to the position they govern (=c-command), perfect predi- 
cates assign morphological ergative to the position they govern, the 
VP-Spec which host Agents. On the other hand, the realization of 
Experiencer arguments is not specified due to the prominence mis- 
matches between thematic and aspectual dimensions (cf. Grimshaw 
1990:93-40), and therefore other mechanism of argument realization 
must be sought. One plausible alternative, of course, is lexical specifi- 
cation, accomplished by the assignment of lexical dative Case. The 
assignment of an additional morphological ergative to these argu- 
ments by perfect psych predicates is prevented by some language 
specific Case-conflict resolution. The proposal does allow for the pos- 
sibility of double morphological Case assignment, which is attested in 
languages such as Korean, where a subject can appear with two 
morphological Cases, e.g., dative-nominative (Gerdts and Youn 1990). 

82 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 



And finally, I conclude with some comments on Mahajan's 
(1993) account of ergativity. Mahajan assumes that ergative subjects 
are generated as oblique subjects, i.e., subjects appear with an unin- 
corporated P (adposition). I agree with Mahajan that the morphologi- 
cal form, ergative, is tied to the lexical properties of the perfective 
morphology. However, I am concerned with some aspects of his anal- 
ysis deriving ergativity, though, he does admit that his account does 
not readily extend to Kashmiri. But there is yet another problem, 
which has to do with his assumption that ergative is assigned (as a 
constructional Case) by non-Case assigning predicates. As I have 
demonstrated earlier in (18), perfect predicates in Kashmiri do in- 
deed assign morphological accusative. Now it is possible that Kash- 
miri is unique among Indie languages in this sense; certainly more 
research needs to be done. Further, in order to account for Kashmiri/ 
German facts of ergativity, Mahajan needs to appeal solely to the 
'Incorporation-blocking" theory, namely that object-Aux agreement 
blocks P incorporation, yielding ergativity. Given the French and 
Hindi data, it seems to work, and it works for Kashmiri. The word 
order/adjacency conditions on incorporation simply do not work for 
German and Kashmiri. 

Bhatt: On experiencers and subjects of perfect predicates 8 3 


1 And for other related Indo-Aryan languages which show the 
same phenomena as (1), see Mahajan 1990 and Davison 1985. 

- There are two other agentive markers (/?>'-phrases) in Kash- 
miri: zaryi, and dasyi. There is very little difference, if any, in the 
use of the three oblique agentive markers. Thus we could form a 
passive using any combination, as shown in (i-iii) below: 

(i) tas athyi aayi palav chal-ni 
he(D) by came clothes wash-Pass 
'The clothes were washed by him.' 

(ii) tasind dasyi aayi palav chal-ni 

he(G) by came clothes wash-Pass 
'The clothes were washed by him.' 

(iii) tasind zaryi aayi palav chal-ni 
he(G) by came clothes wash-Pass 
'The clothes were washed by him.' 

3 The same contrast obtains in other Indo-Aryan languages as in 
the data below: 

(i) a. bacca so-yaa b. bacce se soyaa gayaa 

boy slept boy by slept went 

'The boy slept.' 'It was slept by the boy.' 

[Lit.: 'By the boy was slept.'] 

(ii) a. bacca gir-aa b. *bacce se giraa gayaa 

boy fell boy by fell went 

'The boy fell.' 'It was fell by the boy.' 

4 These gerundive {-ini^ ) nominals are generally believed to be 
complex events (Grimshaw 1990). 

"^ Besides, there are certain intransitive perfect predicates that 
regularly take ergative subjects, e.g. verbs such as asun "to laugh", 
vadun "to cry", etc., which do not have "purposive" meaning as one 
finds in Hindi (T. Mohanan 1990). 

84 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:2 (Fall 1994) 


Baker, M. 1988. Incorporation. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 

Bhatt, R. M. 1993. Dative subjects and retreats in UG. In Samiaan et 
al (eds.) Proceedings of WECOL 4. 

. 1994. Case and word order in Kashmiri. Ph.D. dissertation. 

University of Illinois. 

Chomsky, N. 1986. Barriers. Cambridge: MIT Press. 

. 1991. Some notes on economy of derivation and representa- 
tion. In Robert Freiden: (ed.) Principles and parameters in com- 
parative grammar. Cambridge: MIT Press. 417-454. 

COWPER, E. 1988. What is a subject? Non-nominative subjects in Ice- 
landic. NELS 18. 

Davison, a. 1985. Experiencers and patients as subjects in Hindi- 
Urdu. In A. Zide et al. (eds.) Proceedings of the conference on 
participant roles: South Asia and adjacent area. 

GERDTS, D. and C. Youn. 1990. Psych constructions and case in Korean, 
ms. SUNY Buffalo. 

Grimshaw, J. 1990. Argument structure. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press. 

HOLMBERG, Andres. 1986. Word order and syntactic features in the 
Scandinavian languages and English. Stockholm: Department of 
General Linguistics, University of Stockholm. 

Kachru, Braj. 1973. An introduction to spoken Kashmiri. Urbana, IL: 
University of Illinois Press. 

Levin, L & J. Simpson. 1981. Quirky case and lexical representation of 
Icelandic verbs. Chicago Linguistics Society 17,185-96. 

MahajAN, a. 1990. A/A' distinction and movement theory. MIT dis- 
sertation., MIT. 

. 1993. The ergativity parameter: have-be alternation: word 

order and split ergativity. Proceedings of NELS 1993. 

Maling, Joan and Annie Zaenen (eds.) 1990. Modern Icelandic syn- 
tax. Syntax and Semantics, vol. 24. San Diego: Academic Press. 

Marantz, a. 1991. Icelandic Quirky case and the theory of double 
object constructions. Paper presented at LSA 1991. 

Mohan AN, T. 1990. Arguments in Hindi. Ph.D. dissertation, Stanford 
University, Stanford, CA. 

SigURSsson, Halldor. 1991. Icelandic case-marked PRO and the licens- 
ing of lexical A-positions. Natural Language and Linguistic 
Theory 9.327-363. 

Travis, L. 1991. Derived objects, inner aspect, and the structure of 
VP. Proceedings of NELS. 

Zaenen, A., J. Maling and H. Thrainsson. 1985. Case and grammatical 
functions: The Icelandic Passive. Natural Language and Linguistic 
Theory 3.441-483. 

Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Andrew Carnie, MIT 

Elizabeth Pyatt, Harvard University 

Heidi Harley, MIT 

Much recent work on deriving VSO word order has 
moved away from using a verb raising to C° analysis to an 
analysis using raising to the left edge of the inflectional 
complex. We argue using facts from enclisis, prosody, and 
morphology alternations that Old Irish had both raising to C° 
and raising to the left edge of inflection in its word order 

0. Introduction 

There are two schools of thought over the derivation of VSO or- 
der in the generative paradigm. One holds that the verb raises to the 
highest complementizer position of the matrix clause, in a manner 
familiar from the V2 languages. The other holds that the verb is not 
in C° at all, rather it appears on the highest head of the inflectional 
complex, and the subject appears in some lower structural position. 
The first of these approaches was popular in the early work in the 
Government and Binding Framework (Stowell 1989, Deprez & Hale 
1986, Hale 1989). The latter approach has gained popularity in more 
recent work (Chomsky 1992, Bobaljik & Carnie 1992, Carnie 1993, 
Rouveret 1991, Guilfoyle 1990, 1993, Duffield 1990, 1991, Pyatt 
1992, McCloskey 1992a, among many others). In this paper we 
would like to reopen the question of whether V ^ C° movement can 
be present in VSO languages. We will argue, on the basis of evidence 
from Old Irish, that both V -^ INFL and V -» C° can be present in a 
single language. We will argue that Old Irish had a "filled C°" re- 
quirement, giving V ^ C° movement, but also had V -^ INFL move- 
ment in clauses with filled complementizers. 

1. Two approaches to VSO order: 

German and Dutch stand as typical examples of V2 languages. In 
tensed clauses without an overt complementizer, the verb must ap- 
pear in "second position" in these languages. The first position in the 
sentence is occupied by any constituent. In example (1) below (data 
from Haegeman 1991), the verb kaufte always appears in the second 
position, any of the other constituents (the subject Karl, the object 
dieses Bitch, or the temporal adverb western) can appear in the first 
position. The remaining constituents follow the verb. 

86 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

( 1 ) a. Karl kaufte dieses Buch gestern 

Karl bought this book yesterday 

'Karl bought this book yesterday' 

b. Dieses Buch kaufte Karl gestern 
this book bought Karl yesterday 
'Karl bought this book yesterday' 

c. Gestern kaufte Karl dieses Buch 
yesterday bought Karl this book 

'Karl bought this book yesterday' 

In clauses with overt complementizers, by contrast, there is no V2 
ordering. The verb appears in final position: 

(2) Ich dachte daB Karl gestern das buch gekauft hat 
I thought that Karl yesterday the book bought had 
'I thought that Karl had bought the book yesterday' 

The standard analyses (see, e.g., McCloskey 1992b) of V2 hold 
that there is a requirement that the complementizer position be 
filled in tensed clauses. The verb raises to the empty complementizer 
position in matrix clauses. There is then an additional requirement 
that the specifier of a matrix complementizer be filled by some ele- 
ment giving the V2 orderings. 



^ L 

[cp [ C [,psu\3j [ I [^V ]]]]] 


In embedded clauses, however, the complementizer position is filled 
(possibly with a phonologically null complementizer), and the verb 
cannot raise to it. Thus V2 ordering is blocked. 

An obvious extension of this approach is to posit a set of "VI" 
languages where the requirement on filling the specifier of CP is not 
imposed, giving a VSO ordering'. In this analysis, a Modern Irish VSO 
sentence like (4a) would have a derivation as in (4b). 

(4) a. Leanann an t-ainmni an bhriathar i nGaeilge 

follow. PRES the subject the verb in Irish 

'The subject follows the verb in Irish' (Modern Irish) 


Camie, Pyatt, & Harley: The resurrection: Raising to Comp? 8 7 

The verb raises through its inflectional complex to C° and all the 
other arguments stay in their canonical positions. VSO order, under 
this approach, is thus a 'weak V2' phenomenon: 

(5) The Weak V2 Hypothesis (V ^ C°) 

VSO order is derived via head movement of the verb to C°. 
There is a requirement that C°s in VSO languages be filled, 
but the specifier of CP need not be filled 

The alternative approach to VSO order has suggested that the 
verb does not appear in C°. but rather appears at the left edge of the 
inflectional complex. In Sproat (1983) this is obtained by the adjunc- 
tion of the verb to IP. In later work (e.g. Bobaljik & Carnie 1992), this 
is achieved by head movement of the verb to the highest inflectional 
projection, with shorter movement of the subject to some lower 
specifier. In this paper we will use INFL as shorthand for the inflec- 
tional complex, and leave the subject in the specifier of the VP. This 
is meant only as shorthand, as we remain agnostic on the actual 
placement of the subject. 

(6) CP 




The exact details of how such an approach works are not crucial 
here and we refer the reader to the above-mentioned works for 
more details. It is sufficient to note, however, that in an expanded 
INFL syntax, the verb need not raise to C° to be initial in its clause; 
instead it can raise to the highest inflectional category with its argu- 
ments in the specifiers of lower inflectional phrases. We will call this 
approach the "left edge of inflection hypothesis": 

(7) The Left Edge of Inflection Hypothesis (V ^ INFL) 

VSO order is derived via head movement of the verb to 
the highest inflectional head (AgrS). Arguments appear in 
surface positions lower than this head. There is no (overt) 
raising to C°. 

We will argue that, in Old Irish, at least, both the "Weak V2" system 
and the "left edge of INFL" system are present. Firstly, however, we 

8 8 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

present the evidence that has led to the abandonment of the weak 
V2 derivation for languages like Modern Irish. 

2. Against the weak V2 Hypothesis 

There is a strong set of arguments against using the weak V2 
approach for deriving basic VSO order in Modern Irish. Firstly, there 
is the question of word order in embedded clauses with complemen- 
tizers. Recall that in German, when a clause is embedded, the com- 
plementizer position is filled, and V2 order does not arise. If Irish 
were to have a comparable analysis, then we would expect the order 
C°-SOV or C°-SVO in embedded clauses. This prediction is immedi- 
ately falsified by the facts of Irish. In fact we only get C°-VSO order. 
The verb still must raise: 

(8) Ceapaim [go bhfaca se an madra ] 
think. PRES. Is [ that see.PST.DEP he.NOM the dog ] 

COMP V Subj Obj 

T think that he saw the dog.' 

The motivation for this verb-first ordering cannot be an obligatorily 
filled C° requirement, since there is a filled complementizer, thus the 
verb should not have to raise. 

McCloskey (1992b) presents a more complicated argument using 
the behavior of adverbs showing that the verb is no higher than the 
left edge of IP in Modern Irish. In English, there is a set of adverbs 
and adverbial clauses which appear to the right of complementizers 
but to the left of subjects (data from McCloskey 1992b): 

(9) a. That in general he understands what is going on seems 

fairly clear 
b. It's surprising that most of the time he understands what 
is going on. 

These adverbial elements can never appear to the left of the com- 
plementizer in English (the following sentence is to be read with the 
adverb having scope only over the embedded clause, as in the sen- 
tence in (9)): 

(10) *lt's surprising in general that he understands what is going 

McCloskey (1992a) argues that the pattern seen above follows from 
the Adjunction Prohibition of Chomsky (1986): 

(11) Adjunction Prohibition (after McCloskey 1992b) 
Adjunction to a phrase s-selected by a lexical head is un- 

Under this principle, adverbials are allowed to adjoin to IPs that are 
complements to C°, a functional head. However, they are forbidden to 
adjoin to CPs that are selected by a verbal head, a lexical category. In 
this sense, then, the adverbials shown above in (9) and (10) can be 
called IP adjoined adverbs. In contrast, in matrix clauses, where 


Camie, Pyatt, & Harley: The resurrection: Raising to Comp? 89 

there is no lexical selection of CPs, these same adverbials can appear 
to the left of a wh-complementizer: 

(12) a. When you get home, what do you want to do? 

b. Next Christmas, whose parents should we go see. 

In Irish, surprisingly, the order of adverbials and complementiz- 
ers is different. Adverbials appear to the left of both complemen- 
tizers and subjects in both matrix and embedded CPs (data again 
from McCloskey 1992b): 

(13) Adverb C V S 

Lionaim d'eagla d adtogfainn m o radharcdoibh go 

Fill. Is of fear if lift-Is. cond my sight from. 3. s that 



'I fill up with fear that, were I to take my eyes off, then I 

would fair 

At first glance, it might appear that Irish lacks the Adjunction 
Prohibition. However, under closer examination it becomes apparent 
that this is not the case. Irish does have restriction on adjunction to 
embedded CPs. Consider the following example (data from 

(14) *Ni bhfuair siad amach ariamh an bhliain since a 
Neg found they out ever that year who C 
bhi ag gold a gcuid mona 

was prog steal their turf 

'They never found out who was stealing their turf that year' 

In this case, a selected wh-interrogative CP, where you have both a 
C° and a wh-head marking the left edge of CP, the adverb is illicit to 
the left of the wh-word. For this case, then, the Adjunction 
Prohibition holds. This must be accounted for. 

McCloskey suggests that the solution to this paradox is that the 
adverbs in (13) are IP adjoined, despite the fact they appear to the 
left of the complementizer. He claims that the C° in Modern Irish 
lowers to attach to the verb^ because it requires support as a clitic, 
as illustrated in (15). 


I T 

The important and relevant conclusion here, however, is that since 
these adverbs are IP adjoined and they appear to the left of the in- 
Oected verb, then the verb must be no higher than the left edge of 
the inflectional complex. This serves as fairly strong evidence against 
the weak V2 hypothesis. 

90 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

3. Old Irish: a language with two kinds of raising. 

Although the complex arguments from adverbial interpretation 

are not available for Old Irish, there is strong evidence that Old Irish 

has raising to 1°, just like Modern Irish. Old Irish has VSO word order 
in declarative sentences (16)3; 

(16) Beogidir in spirut in corp 
vivifies-3s the spirit the body 
'The spirit vivifies the body' 

As in Modern Irish, when the complementizer is filled with a parti- 
cle, the verb is still otherwise clause initial: 

(17) Ni beir in fer in claideb 
Neg.C° carries-3s-conj the man the sword 
'The man does not carry the sword.' 

This being the case. Old Irish must be a language with raising to INFL 
in its derivation of VSO order. 

We claim, however, that Old Irish also has a filled C° require- 
ment, using evidence from the placement of enclitic pronouns and 
phonological behavior of certain verbal elements. This requirement 
can be met by complementizers, by verbs, or by subparts of morpho- 
logically complex verbs. Thus Old Irish is a language that has both 
raising to C° and raising to the left edge of IP. 

3.1 The cast of characters 

A major difference between Old Irish and Modern Irish lies in 
the complexity of the verbal system. The morphology of the Old Irish 
verb includes verbal roots, inflectional endings and a series of pre- 
verbal particles. The preverbal particles are of three types: conjunct 
particles (C), preverbs (P) and object enclitics (E). These particles, the 
verb and its person/number endings form what is called the "verbal 
complex". Excluding the enclitics for the moment, there is a strict or- 
dering to these forms (18b). An example of a maximal verbal com- 
plex is given in (19). 

(18) Old Irish Verbal Complex 

a. Conjunct Particles (C) — negation, question marker, C°s 
Preverbs (P) — Alters verb meaning, adds perfective aspect 
Verb (V)+Subject inflection (S)— The verb root itself 
and person agreement. 
Enclitics (E) — Object clitics and relative markers 

b. C > P > V-S 

(19) Ni-m« accai (Ni + m+ ad + ci+3sng) 
Neg-me«see-3s C (E) P V-S 

'he does not see me' 

Following Duffield (1991), we assume the conjunct particle posi- 
tion (C) corresponds to the C° position. This explains why it must be 



Camie, Pyatt, & Harley: The resurrection: Raising to Comp? 9 1 

ordered before the other preverbal particles. In Modern Irish, the 
conjunct particles form phonological units with overt complementiz- 
ers (see Duffield 1991 for discussion): 

(20) go 'that' + ni 'neg' -^ nach 'neg.comp' 

go 'that' + nior 'neg-past' -^ nar 'neg. past. comp' 

Similar facts are found in Old Irish, thus we will assume that the 
conjunct particles correspond to C° in the older form of the language 
as well. 

Given this cast of characters, we will show how certain morpho- 
logical, phonological and syntactic processes argue for having both 
raising of verb to the left edge of IP and to C°. 

3.2 Deriving absolute vs. conjunct forms 

In Old Irish, the verb and its inflection take two different forms 

depending upon whether or not it is in absolute initial position. These 

two forms are called absolute and conjunct (21) (examples taken 
from Strachan 1949): 

(21) Absolute Conjunct 

berid -beir 'he carries' 

beirait -berat 'they carry' 

marbfa -marbub 'I will kill' 

midimmir -midemmar 'we judge' 

The absolute form is used when the verbal root is in absolute first 
position in the sentence, that is when the inflected verb is not pre- 
ceded by any conjunct particles, preverbs or pronouns (22). The 
conjunct form is used when the verb is preceded by a conjunct par- 
ticle or a preverb (23). 

(22) Beirid in fer in claideb (Absolute) 
Carries-3s-abs the man the sword 

'The man carries the sword.' 

(23) Ni beir/*beirid in fer in claideb (Conjunct) 
If carries-3s-conj/*abs the man the sword 

'If the man carries the sword'. 

Interestingly, the appearance of a verb in its conjunct form is 
not necessarily a function of the presence of the preverbs or conjunct 
particles. Rather, the conjunct form is found anywhere that the verb 
is not in absolute first position. This is the so-called Bergin's law.^ 
This principle is especially true in some poetic forms where strict 
VSO order is not obligatory. Take for example the following lines 
from the Enna Labraid Luad Cdich as cited in Carney (1978): 

92 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(24) ... srethaib sluag soi Crimthan Coscrach cing cet 

... with lines of hosts won Crimthan victorious hero hundred 
catha, ... 

'With lines of hosts, Crimthan the victorious hero, won a hun- 
dred battles' (absolute: *soid) 

Conjunct verbal inflection then is a feature of non-initial position. 

We claim that this distribution is definable in a systematic way: 
when the verb has raised to C° it takes the absolute morphology. 
When the verb is in any other position (either at the left edge of IP 
or in SVO order as in the poem fragment above), it takes the more 
basic conjunct form. 

In (23) above, the C° has been filled with the conjunct particle ni 
'neg' thus blocking the raising of beir "carries-3s-conj" to C°. The verb 
raises through the inflectional heads to the left edge of INFL just like 
it would in Modern Irish; the inflected verb is thus realized as beir. 
The resultant S-structure is seen in (25). 

(25) [cp Ni [jp beiri-t-INFL [jp in fer [yp ti in claideb]]] 

In (22), by contrast, there is no overt complementizer or any 
other type of preverbal particle. Thus the filled C° requirement 
forces the verb to raise from INFL to C° (26). 

(26) [qp Beridj-i-C" [jp tj [yp in fer [y ti in claideb ]]] 

When the inflected verb beir "carries" raises to C°, it actually is in- 
corporating into a null C°. This C-INFL-V complex is then realized as 
berid instead of beir. An interesting variation to this pattern occurs 
in relative clauses. If the null C° is [+wh], then a third form of the 
verb is used in lieu of the absolute form (27). For example, in the 
sentence below, the inflected verb of the relative clause gaibid 
"grabs" surfaces as gaibes , the relative form of the verb. 

(27) Is oinferj [cp 0i gaibesi [iP ti biiaid]] 
cop one-man Op. grabs-3s-rel victory 

'It is one man who grabs victory.' 

The differences between the relative form and the absolute form 
show that the morphology of the absolute is used to signal which null 
C° ([±wh]) is present in the complementizer position. Since the verb 
forms in absolute initial position vary depending upon what type of 
complementizer is present in the clause, it lends support to the the- 
ory that these verbs are in fact in C°. 

3.3 Compound verbs and preverbal particles 

The preverbs are the prepositional components of Old Irish 
compound verbs. For example, given the basic verb berid 'carries', 
the addition of a preverbal particle shifts the meaning in unpre- 
dictable ways: as'berid means "says" (literally "out-carry"). Similar 
forms, such as shine/outshine and blow/blow up, are occasionally 

Camie, Pyatt, & Harley: The resurrection: Raising to Comp? 93 

found in English. In Old Irish, however, the use of these particles is 
quite common, and help to form a large class of Old Irish verbal 
morphology. We claim that depending upon what other elements ap- 
pear in the complex, these preverbal particles can behave as if they 
were either in C° or as if they were combined with the verb in INFL. 
In particular, it seems that given a compound verb with no conjunct 
particle, a preverbal particle satisfies the filled C° requirement. 

Consider the following compound verb: as'beir "says-3s". This is 
composed of the preverbal particle as- and beir "carries". However, 
when this verb comes after a conjunct particle ni "neg", the form of 
the verb is radically changed. In the example below, the form for 
"say-Is" is as-biur when there is no conjunct particle (28), but epur 
when it follows a conjunct particle like ni (29). 

(28) as»b i u rin so 

say-Is this 
'I say this.' 

(29) Ni epur/*as»b iu ra n-anman sund 
Neg say- Is their names here 
'I do not say their names.' 

Despite the obvious differences between these forms, there is no 
suppletion here. Instead, rules of stress shift, syncope, provection, 
reduplication and lenition all interact to muddy the forms. 

The domain of application of these phonological rules provides 
evidence for our analysis. The entire verbal complex forms a single 
phonological unit that cannot be broken apart by adverbs and other 
intrusive material. This grouping we will call the "clitic group" - (k). 
However, there is a smaller phonological unit, the word (w) which is 
the domain of stress and syncope. Consistently, conjunct particles (C) 
and enclitic pronouns stand outside the phonological word (30a). 
Preverbal particles (P) on the other hand vary in their position, de- 
pending upon what other material is in the clitic group (30b). 

(30) a. [kC[w P (P) (P) (P) V]] 
b. [kP[w P(P)(P) V]] 

For concreteness let us consider the example of stress. Stress in 
Old Irish is always on the leftmost syllable in the word. This is true 
of absolute verbs, nouns, and adjectives. When the verb is complex 
however, either with a conjunct particle or with a preverb, the stress 
falls on the second non-enclitic morphological unit: 

(31) a. C -P (P) (P) (P) V 

b. C . V 

c. P • P (P) (P) V 

d. P • V 

There thus appears to be a special "pre-tonic" slot in initial position 
for a preverb or conjunct particle, which does not participate in the 
metrical structure of the rest of the verbal complex. We will indicate 

94 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

the division between the pre-tonic position and the rest of the com- 
plex with the use of the symbol <•> (following Thurneysen 1946). 
Usually, the enclitic and any syllabic material it brings with it will be 
part of the pre-tonic. We can thus describe the distribution of the el- 
ements as follows: 

(32) i. Conjunct particles are always pretonic 

ii. If there is no conjunct particle, then the first preverb 
is pretonic 

If we add a conjunct particle to a verb with preverbs, then the 
previously pretonic preverb joins the rest of the verbal complex and 
participates in its metrical structure, causing stress pattern to change 
as seen in (33) below. 

(33) a. as»b i u r "say-Is" /as. b 'ur / 

b. 'cpur "say-Is" /^e.bur/; 

The underlined syllable is the one that receives the stress. In (33a) 
the preverb as appears in pretonic position and does not participate 
in the metrical structure of the verb (stress falls on biur). When the 
conjunct particle is added, the preverb behaves as if it is part of the 
second element in the complex, and takes main stress. The other 
phonological alternations (/a/~/e/ and /sb/~/b/) follow from this 
shift in metrical structure. See McCone (1987) for more details. 

As the conjunct particles always fall in the pretonic position, we 
conclude that the pretonic position is associated with the comple- 
mentizer head. Since one preverb is required to be pretonic when 
there is no conjunct complementizer, it follows that a preverb can 
satisfy the filled C° requirement. When there is no overt comple- 
mentizer, only the preverb, not the entire inflected verb, raises to C° 
to satisfy the Filled-C° requirement. 

Let us consider a derivation of this type. We will assume that 
the preverbal particles are reflexes of a Hale & Keyser (1991) type 
complex VP, or of a Pesetsky (forthcoming) style stacked PP struc- 
ture. For the purposes of diagramming only, we use a Hale & Keyser 
type format. We will consider the sentence in (28) with the base 
form in (34) 

(34) [cp [0] [ip [INFL] [yppro [v as [v buir [advp in so]]]]]] 

The preverb as raises to C° to satisfy the filled C° requirement. The 
verbal root buir raises to 1°, as in modern Irish, accounting for the 
difference in phonological domains, the two domains correspond to 
distinct heads: INFL and C°. 

(35) [cp [asi] [ip [buirj] [vp pro [v tj [v tj [advp in so]]]]]] 

When a conjunct particle complementizer like ni "neg" is present 
however, the preverb remains in INFL with the rest of the verb 
putting it into the same metrical unit with the root verb. (36) 

Camie, Pyatt, & Harley: The resurrection: Raising to Comp? 


a n - a n m a n 
their names 


(36) [cp Ni [ip[i° epur (^ as +buir) ] 

Neg say-Is 

'I do not say their names'. 

The reader will have noticed that in allowing the two verbal 
heads (the preverb and the verbal root) to raise to separate func- 
tional categories, we have created a violation of the Head Movement 
Constraint (HMC). Consider (37) 



It appears as if the verbal root skips the intermediate preverb on its 
way to INFL. Similarly, the preverb seems to skip the intermediate 
Inflectional heads on its way to C°. 

This problem is especially acute in the cases where more than 
one preverb appears, as in (38). In ad'cosnai "strives after" (ad-com- 
sni), the first preverb moves to the C° head, but the other preverb is 
incorporated with the verbal root (com + sni ^ •cosnai). This type of 
example shows that there are cases where the verbal root does in- 
corporate into a preverb. 




com [ sni 




to INFL 

This incorporation suggests a solution to the HMC violation. The verb 
head-moves from preverb to preverb, skipping none (in compliance 
with the HMC) incorporating each preverb as it raises. After the verb 
has raised to the highest projection in the inflectional complex, the 
filled C° requirement is still not met. In order to satisfy this require- 
ment the first preverb in the string (the least embedded preverb) 
excorporates and moves into C°. This is illustrated in (39). 



Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

This excorporation account satisfying the requirement on filled C°s, 
gives good empirical coverage of the phonological distribution of the 

3.4 Placement of enclitics 

which include object pronouns, relative pronouns, and conjunctions. 
The enclitic pronouns are always found after the first morphological 
element in the verbal complex (40). The following examples are 
taken from Strachan (1949): 

(40) a. Ni-m* accai (Ni + m+ ad + ci-3sng) 

Neg -me see-3s CEP V-S 

'she does not see me' 

b. aton«ci 
P-us see -3s 
'she sees us' 

c. bertaigth-i5 
'he shakes him 

(ad + (do)n + ci -3sng) 
P E V-S 

(bertaig -th -i- i) 
V- S E 

The distribution of enclitics is somewhat puzzling from a syntactic 
perspective; sometimes they precede the verb (when there is a pre- 
verb or conjunct particle), however, other times they follow the verb 
(when the verb is absolute). This distribution is transparent when we 
assume that Old Irish had a filled C° requirement. Once we make this 
claim, then the distribution of enclitic pronouns is straightforward: 

(41 ) Enclitics (E) adjoin to C°.6,7 

This is true of whether the C is filled by a conjunct particle, a pre- 
verb or an absolute verb form. 

Camie, Pyatt, & Harley: The resurrection: Raising to Comp? 


Let us consider a few derivations. The underlying structure and 
verb to INFL raising of bertaigth-i "he shakes him" is shown in (42). 


[ [0] [ [INFL] [ [v'bertaigth i]]]] 

-n I 

^ The verb raises to the left edge of IP, satisfying its feature-checking 

(w requirements. However, the filled C° requirement must still be met, 

[l as must the requirement on object pronominal encliticization. So the 

' verb raises to C°, and the object clitic adjoins to it (43): 




bertaigth - i ^ 

With this structure, then, we get the correct absolute inflectional 
marking and the correct object enclitic placement. Let us now con- 
sider the more complicated example of a verb with a preverb such as 
atori'Ci "he sees us". The underlying structure will look like (44): 

(44) [cp[0] [iP [INFL] [yppro [v [ad] [v [ci] (ob,-n-) ]]]]]] 

The C° requirement is met by raising the preverb ad-. The verb 
raises, through all of the intlectional heads to the left edge of IP 
(AgrS), and the object cliticizes to C° (45): 

(45) [cp [c+v+E adi-onj] [ip [i+v+v Ij +ci] Uy, pro [ tj tj] 

Finally, let us consider the complicated case of a verb with both 
a preverb and a Conjunct particle: Ni-m* accai "he does not see me") . 
The underlying structure: 

(46) [cp[Ni] [ip [INFL] [vppro [v [ad] [v [ci] (obj-m-) ]]]]]] 

The conjunct particle occupies C° and satisfies the filled C° require- 
ment. The pronominal object cliticizes to C°. The verb first incorpo- 
rates with its preverb then proceeds through the inflectional heads 

(47) to the left edge of IP: 

(47) [cp [c+E Ni-t] [ip [i+v+v ad +ci] U^pro [...]] 

9 8 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

4. Conclusion 

In this short paper, we have attempted to account for the com- 
plex and intricate behavior of verbs, preverbs, particles and clitics in 
the Old Irish verbal complex. We have argued that, contra most cur- 
rent theories of VSO ordering, Old Irish makes use of raising to C° 
due to a filled C° requirement. The fact that the pretonic and the rest / 
of the complex behave metrically like two words rather than one \ 
follows from the fact that the two elements are in different struc- / 
tural positions in the sentence, forming a "clitic group" rather than a 
single phonological word. The distribution of absolute inflection is 
now definable in a systematic way: when the verb has raised to C° it 
takes different morphology. Finally, the position of enclitics is now 
uniformly accounted for. They always attach to C°, whether this be a 
preverb, conjunct particle, or the verb itself. The fact that this anal- 
ysis provides a systematic account for these facts is a strong argu- 
ment for the raising to C° analysis. Raising to the left edge of INFL is 
also still required to account for the fact that the verb still precedes 
its subject even when there is an overt complementizer. The filled- 
Comp requirement, not active in Modern Irish, thus explains many 
facts about the Old Irish verbal complex that would otherwise re- 
main mysterious. 


* We would like to thank the audiences at FLSM V and the 
Harvard Practicum for their helpful comments and discussion of the 
material in this paper. Special thanks are also due to Hoskuldur 
Thrainsson, Calvert Watkins, Sam Epstein, David Pesetsky, Alec 
Marantz, Beatrice Santorini, James McCloskey, Hans Heinrich Hock, 
Sabine latridou, Joseph Eska, Carson Schutze and Robin Schafer. 

1 We are assuming here, (after McCloskey 1983, Sproat 1983, 
Duffield 1991, Bobaljik and Carnie 1993) that VSO order is a derived 
order and that the underlying order of Modern Irish is SVO. 

2 See Bobaljik (1993) for an alternative analyses of these facts. 

3 Throughout this paper we will use the traditional spelling 
system of Old Irish. We refer the reader to Thurneysen (1980) for 
the complete details of how Old Irish is pronounced. The old Irish 
examples have been taken from Strachan (1949), Strachan (1944), J 
McCone (1987) and Thurneysen (1980) who take them from various ^ 
primary sources. 

^ Bergin's law is usually not phrased exactly this way. In 
Thurneysen (1980:§513) for example it is articulated as "Simple and 
compound verbs may be placed at the end of the clause; the form 
then have conjunct flexion....". However, Carney (1978) argues that 
the formulation adopted in the text above is more accurate since 
verbs can appear medially in some poetic registers. 

Camie, Pyatt, & Harley: The resurrection: Raising to Comp? 9 9 

■^ This form is later replaced by no-S'mbertaigeadar. However, 
the absolutive form continues to be used when there is no object 
pronoun. We will be concerned mainly with the period when object 
clitics adjoined after the main verb. 

6 An equally empirically adequate account, consistent with the 
analysis of verb movement to C° proposed here, is found in Duffield 
(1994). He proposes that there is an extra position between the 
highest Inflectional position and the C°. This is the "Wackernagalian" 
head. The pronominal clitics could occupy this position in Old Irish 
and still be consistent with the analysis of verb movement presented 

"^ Old English clitics have been analyzed as marking the left edge 
of IP in a similar manner, see, e.g, Pintzuk (1991). 


BOBALJIK, J. 1993. What does adjacency do? MIT, MS. 

, & Carnie A. 1992. A minimalist approach to some problems of 

Irish word order. Proceedings of the Harvard Celtic Colloquium 
XII (revised version to appear in Celtic and Beyond, ed. by I. 
Roberts & R. Borsley. Cambridge University Press). 

Carney, J. 1978. Aspects of archaic Irish. Eigse 17:4.417-435. 

Carnie, A. 1993. Nominal predicates and absolutive case marking in 
Modern Irish. MIT Working Papers in Linguistics 19. 

Chomsky, N. 1992. A minimalist program for linguistic theory. 

Duffield. 1991. Particles and projections. University of Southern 
California Ph.D. Dissertation. 

. 1994. Are you right? Paper presented at the 1994 WCCFL. 

GUILFOYLE, E. 1990. Functional categories and phrase structure pa- 
rameters. McGill University Ph.D. Dissertation. 

1993. Nonfinite clauses in Modern Irish and Old English. To ap- 
pear in the Proceedings of the CLS 1993. 

HaegEMAN, L. 1991. Introduction to government and binding theory. 
Cambridge, MA: Basil Blackwell. 

Hale, K., & J. Keyser 1991. On the syntax of argument structure. 
Lexicon Project Working Paper #34. MIT Center for Cognitive 

McCloskEY, J. 1983. A VP in a VSO language. Order concord and con- 
stituency, ed. by G. Gazdar, G. Pullum, & I. Sag. Dordrecht: Foris. 

.1992a. Adjunction, selection and embedded verb second. 

University of California at Santa Cruz, MS. 

1992b On the scope of verb movement in Modern Irish. 

Technical Report LRC-92-10. Linguistics Research Center, 
Cowell College University of California at Santa Cruz. 

McCONE, K. 1987. The early Irish verb. An Sagart: Maynooth. 

PESETSKY, D. forthcoming. Zero syntax. MIT, MS. 


100 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

PiNTZUK. 1991. Phrase structures in competition: variation and 

change in Old English word order. University of Pennsylvania 

Ph.D. Dissertation. 
Pollock, J-.Y. 1989. Verb-movement, universal grammar, and the 

structure of IP. Linguistic Inquiry 20.365-424. 
PYATT, E. 1992. Incomplete subject raising and Welsh word order. 

Proceedings of the Harvard Celtic Colloquium XII. 
ROUVERET, A. 1991. Functional categories and agreement. The 

Linguistics Review 8.353-387. \ j 

Strachan, J. 1984. Old Irish paradigms and glosses, 4th edition. 

Dublin: Royal Irish Academy. 
. 1944. Stories from the Tain, 3rd edition. Dublin: Royal Irish 

SPROAT, R. 1983. VSO languages and Welsh configurationality. MIT 

Working Papers in Linguistics 5. 
Stenson, N. 1981. Studies in Irish syntax. Tubingen: Gunter Narr 

STOWELL, T. 1989. Raising in Irish and the projection principle. 

Natural Language and Linguistic theory 7.317-359. 
THURNEYSEN, R. 1980. A grammar of Old Irish: An enlarged edition 

with supplement (first ed. 1941). Translated by Binchy & 

Bergin. Dublin Institute for Advanced studies. 
W ATKINS, C. 1963. Preliminaries to a historical and comparative syn- 
tax of the Old Irish verb. Celtica 6. 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Jennifer Cole & Charles W. Kisseberth 
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 

In this paper we propose an alternative to the autoseg- 
mental view of assimilation as spreading. Adopting the non- 
derivational, constraint-based grammars of OT, we model 
harmony in terms of harmony domains — structures which 
are defined by universal constraints, and which are explic- 
itly encoded in phonological representation. Transparency 
and opacity develop from the interaction between con- 
straints that align harmony domains and constraints on the 
occurrence of the harmony feature within the domain. The 
proposed analysis assumes privative features, and avoids 
the stipulatory use of feature underspecification or feature 
geometry which characterizes many autosegmental accounts 
of opacity and transparency. 

1. Introduction 

Since the advent of Autosegmental Phonology (AP), the prevailing 
model of harmony has been that of autosegmental spreading. Under- 
specification is central to the analysis, serving to distinguish targets 
and transparent segments from opaque segments. Yet the disparate 
and often contradictory patterns of transparency and opacity across 
harmony systems resist a unified treatment in AP. There have been 
a variety of proposals to extend AP by manipulating feature geome- 
try or underspecification on a language-by-language basis, in an at- 
tempt to preserve the basic claim of the AP approach, namely that 
harmonic behavior, including transparency and opacity, follows from 
the properties of the representation. There have been some recent 
positive developments, such as Archangeli & Pulleyblank's (1993) 
work on the role of feature co-occurrence constraints in harmony 
systems, but overall, AP has not yet provided a unified, principled 
account of harmony that is sufficiently general to yield fruitful anal- 
yses of the full range of harmony systems. 

The AP analysis of harmony is inherently derivational, and 
typically relies on extrinsic rule ordering in which harmony spread- 
ing is ordered between redundancy rules that fill out undcrspecified 
representations. As such, it provides an analysis of harmony that 
cannot be directly incorporated in non-derivational frameworks, 
such as Optimality Theory. 

In this paper we propose an alternative to the AP analysis. 
Adopting the constraint-based grammars of OT, we model harmony 
in terms of harmony domains — structures which are defined by uni- 

102 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

versal constraints, and which are explicitly encoded in phonological 
representation. This approach is termed OPTIMAL DOMAINS THEORY, 
or ODT. ODT provides a general characterization of transparency and 
opacity that yields interesting new analyses for a wide variety of 
harmony systems. A core motivation for ODT is our rejection of the 
AP claim that given the "right" representations, the properties of 
harmony systems follow. In our view, AP has failed to deliver suffi- 
ciently motivated principles of feature specification and feature ge- 
ometry that are needed to select the "right" representations. ODT 
does not invoke underspecification or feature geometry as key fac- 
tors in the analysis of harmony systems. More specifically, ODT 
departs from (standard) AP in adopting the following assumptions: 

• Features are privative (Steriade 1993). A partial set of features 
used in the ODT analysis of harmony include: Round, Palatal 
([-back]), Velar ([+back]). High, Low, Non-peripheral ([-high, 
-low]). Nasal, Sonorant, Obstruent. 

• In underlying representation, segments are fully specified, to 
the extent that there is any evidence at all for an underlying 

• There is no need for multiple association between anchors and 
features in the analysis of transparency and opacity. From this 
it follows that harmony is not modelled as autosegmental 

• Feature geometry is not explicitly encoded in the phonological 
representations which define underlying and surface forms. 
Feature geometry may exist as a part of the theory, but it does 
no work in the ODT analysis of harmony. A corollary of this as- 
sumption is that only terminal features harmonize. 2 

• Features are anchored in prosodic units of timing, such as the 
X-slot or mora. 3 

2. The principles of the ODT approach 

The ODT account of harmony involves the following two claims: 

(1) Harmony is the requirement that a feature \F] be uniformly 
realized on anchors in a F-domain. 

(2) F-domains are explicit aspects of phonological structure, with 
the same status as structures for the syllable, foot, word, etc. 

Two basic questions the theory must address are: What principles 
give rise to licit F-domains? What principles govern the realization of 
a feature in its F-domain? The answers to these questions determine 
the particular details of the constraint grammars for harmony sys- 
tems. But beyond the mechanics of the analysis, we also attempt to 
answer the more fundamental question of what functional and pho- 
netic factors motivate harmony in the first place. This broader ques- 
tion is forced, in a sense, by the requirements of OT, since only uni- 
versal constraints can be invoked to derive the domain structures 

Cole & Kisseberth: An optimal domains theory of harmony 103 

and feature insertion of the ODT analysis, and the constraints should 
ideally be grounded in basic considerations of the physical and func- 
tional requirements of speech. 

Before laying out the basic constraint grammar for harmony, 
we summarize a few key points of OT.^ A grammar in OT consists of a 
set of universal constraints, present in every language, which define 
surface well-formedness. Gen{erator) is a function which maps each 
underlying form to an (unbounded) set of candidate surface forms, 
by freely inserting features, freely parsing or failing to parse mate- 
rial (structure and features), and freely generating domain structure 
of every type. Gen is constrained by the Faithfulness conditions 
* Insert and * < a >, which prohibit insertion and underparsing of 
phonological material. Constraints are violable, and thus reflect only 
general trends and tendencies in a phonological system, rather than 
absolute truths about surface well-formedness. Constraints are 
ranked, and ranking determines which of two constraints will be 
upheld when they impose mutually incompatible requirements. 

Within ODT, harmony occurs when a constraint that builds a 
wide harmony domain is ranked above a constraint that builds 
a narrow domain. More generally, we claim: 

(3) Harmony reflects the optimization of constraints on the 
structure of F-domains with other constraints on the realization 


In a language with no harmony, the F-domain for the feature 
[F] is properly aligned with the underlying F-bearing anchor by a set 
of constraints termed Basic Alignment, given in (4). BA says that 
every SPONSORING anchor of [F] (Anchor-s) is aligned with the edge 
of a F-domain. An anchor SPONSORS [F] if it is affiliated with [F] in 
underlying representation. Non-sponsoring anchors are those anchors 
that come to be affiliated with [F] in the mapping form underlying to 
surface form, by the operations of Gen.^ Sponsors may be X-slots or 
moras, for so-called "linked" features, or morphological constituents, 
for so-called "floating" or morpheme-level features. 

(4) Basic Alignment: 

BA-left Align(Anchor-s,L; F-domain, L) 
BA-right Align(Anchor-s,R; F-domain, R) 

Harmony occurs when BA is violated in favor of constraints which 
dictate larger F-domains. Before stating those alignment constraints, 
we pause to consider their underlying motivation. What factors drive 
the existence of larger F-domains? We offer the following two prin- 

(5) Perceptibility: Features should be perceptible. 
Articulator stahility: Minimize changes from the neutral, 
steady state of the articulators. 

Perceptibility derives from the fact that features serve to mark con- 
trast, and must be perceptible to fulfill their function. Many proper- 

104 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

ties of phonology and phonetics can be attributed to the goal of en- 
hancing perceptibility. Articulator Stability reflects that fact that 
features are implemented by an articulatory system which imposes 
its own constraints on the realization of features. Both principles are 
best satisfied whenever a feature is realized over a relatively long 
span, which is expressed in the principle of Extension. 

(6) Extension: Extend a feature over longer stretches of sound in 
order to maximize Perceptibility and Articulator Stability. 

There is an inherent tension between the principle of Extension 
and the functional role of a feature to mark contrasts, since when an 
F-domain is extended, the possibility of contrast between [F] and its 
absence is eliminated in all positions within the extended domain. 
We believe that languages resolve this tension differently, through 
the ranking of harmony-inducing constraints on F-domains with 
Faithfulness constraints that preserve underlying contrasts, giving 
rise to the complex typology of harmony systems. 

The principle of Extension is realized in the constraint-gram- 
mar by the family of constraints we term Wide Scope Alignment 
(WSA), which extend an F-domain to the edge of a morphological or 
prosodic constituent. For example, in languages with rightward [F]- 
harmony, the WSA-right constraint is ranked above BA-right; 
leftward harmony ranks WSA-left above BA-left; and bidirectional 
harmony ranks both WSA constraints above both BA constraints. 

(7) Wide Scope Alignment (WSA) 

WSA-left Align(F-domain,L; P-Cat/M-Cat,L) 
WSA-right Align(F-domain,R; P-Cat/M-Cat,R) 

Harmony domains are licensed by the alignment constraints, 
but alignment alone does not force the realization of the harmony 
feature within the domain. That job is done by an independent con- 
straint termed Expression. ^ 

(8) Expression: [F] must be affiliated with every anchor in an F- 

Like all constraints. Expression may be violated. Violations de- 
rive from restrictions on the insertion or affiliation of [F]. The most 
basic constraint of this sort is *Insert [F]."^ Harmony occurs when a 
language ranks Expression over *Insert [F]. With the opposite rank- 
ing, no harmony will be possible at all, though the domains may be 

(9) Harmony: WSA, Expression » *lnsert [F] 
No Harmony: *lnsert [F] » WSA, Expression 

Expression may also be violated in the presence of highly ranked 
constraints on feature occurrence. For example, constraints such as 
[ATR] ^[vocalic] impose distributional restrictions on the realization 
of features, in this case restricting [ATR] to vowels. In an ATR har- 
mony system, this feature occurrence constraint would serve to 


Cole & Kisseberth: An optimal domains theory of harmony 1 05 

identify only vowels as potential anchors for ATR. Another type of 
constraint is the feature co-occurrence constraint, termed CLASH 
constraint here, which marks certain feature combinations as ill- 
formed. For example, *[ATR, Low] disfavors low, ATR vowels, and can 
prevent ATR from being inserted on an anchor which is specified 
Low, and vice-versa. 

In short, wide F-domains arise when a language ranks WSA 
over BA. The harmony feature is realized in the F-domain due to the 
Expression constraint, which must be ranked over *Insert [F]. Feature 
occurrence constraints may also be ranked over Expression, creating 
situations in which some elements in the P- or M-domain for har- 
mony will not undergo harmony. We claim that it is this situation 
which derives transparency and opacity in ODT. Specifically, we pro- 
pose that transparency and opacity follow from the following con- 
straint rankings: 

(10) Transparency: F-Occurrence, WSA » Expression 
Opacity: F-Occurrence, Expression » WSA 

3. Transparency and opacity in tongue root harmony 

The ODT approach to harmony sketched above is illustrated here 
with the analysis of opacity and transparency in two tongue root 
harmony systems. We contrast the behavior of two languages. 
Idealized Pulaar and Idealized Kinande, which have in common an 
underlying inventory of nine vowels in which the features ATR/RTR 
are contrastive only among the non-low vowels: [ATR] /i,e,o,u/ and 
[RTR] /i,e,o,u/ and /a/.^ The absence of an ATR, low vowel in both 
languages can be attributed to the CLASH constraint *[ATR,Low]. In 
both languages, ATR extends leftward from a high or mid vowel to 
the beginning of the word. In Idealized Pulaar, ATR harmony is 
blocked by a low vowel, as shown in examples (e,f) in the following 

(11) Idealized Pulaar: opaque /a/ 
underlying surface 

Tente' PI. 

'fente' Dim. PI. 

'coureur' Sg. 

'coureur' Dim. PI. 

'diner'(*bootaari. *bootaari) 

'respirations' (*poofaali, 


This system can be characterized with the following constraint 




















Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(12) Constraint grammar for Idealized Pulaar: 
CLASH: *[Low,ATR] 

BA-rt: Align(Anchor-s,R;[ATR]-domain,R) 

Express: Express[ATR] 

WSA-lf: Align([ATR]-domain,L; Word,L) 

BA-lf: Align(Anchor-s,L;[ATR]-domain,L) 

ranking: CLASH, BA-rt, Express » WSA-lf » BA-lf 

The following tableaux illustrate the evaluation of an underly- 
ing sequence with an opaque vowel (the first candidate set), and a 
fully harmonizing sequence (the second candidate set), based on the 
grammar in (12). Note that the sponsoring anchor (the trigger for 
ATR harmony) is the rightmost vowel in both words. 

(13) Evaluation: Idealized Pulaar 

UR: CvC-a-Cv 






# a. CvC-a-(Cv) 


b. (CvC-a-Cv) 



c. CvC-a-Cv 



d. (CvC-a-Cv) 



UR: CyC-v 

# a. (CvC-v) 


b. CvC-v 



c. (CyC-v) 


d. CvC-(v) 


In the first candidate set, the (a) candidate wins— even though it vio- 
lates Wide Scope Alignment, it is the only candidate to satisfy the 
three more highly ranked constraints. In the (b) candidate the low 
vowel undergoes harmony, violating CLASH. The (c) candidate has no 
harmony, and there is no domain for the underlying ATR feature. 
The (d) candidate allows the low vowel to be transparent in the 
middle of a harmony domain, violating Expression. In the second 
candidate set, the winning candidate fully satisfies Wide Scope Align- 
ment and all three of the highest-ranked constraints. 

In Idealized Kindande, the low vowel is transparent to ATR 
harmony, as the following forms show (tone is omitted, and capital 
vowels are used to represent vowels with undetermined underlying 
values for ATR/RTR): 

(14) Idealized Kinande: transparent /a/ 
underlying surface 

a. tU-ka-kl-lim-a 

b. tU-ka-kl-lim-a 

c. tU-ka-kl-huk-a 

d. tU-ka-mU-hum-a 


'we exterminate 
'we cultivate it' 
'we cook it' 
'we beat him' 


Cole & Kisseberth: An optimal domains theory of harmony 


Transparency in Idealized Kinande can be accounted for with 
the following grammar: 

(15) Constraint grammar for Idealized Kinande: 
CLASH: *[Low,ATR] 

BA-rt: Align(Anchor-s,R;[ATR]-domain,R) 

WSA-If: Align([ATR]-domain,L; Word,L) 

Express: Express[ATR] 

BA-lf: Align(Anchor-s,L;[ATR]-domain,L) 

ranking: CLASH, BA-rt, WSA-lf » Express » BA-lf 

The tableaux below illustrate evaluation for two schematized 
examples: the first set with an underlying transparent low vowel, 
and the second set with no transparent vowel. In both examples, the 
sponsoring anchor of [ATR] is again the rightmost vowel. 

(16) Evaluation: Idealized Kinande 

UR: CV-ka-Cv 






# a. (Cv-ka-Cv) 



b. (Cv-ka-Cv) 



c. Cv-ka-Cv 



d. Cv-ka-(Cv) 


UR: CV-Cv 

# a. (Cv-Cv) 


b. Cv-Cv 



c. Cy-(Cv) 


d. (Cv-Cv) 



The analyses of Idealized Pulaar and Kinande show that the 
same constraint set, ranked differently, yields both transparency and 
opacity of the low vowel in tongue root harmonies. 

The ODT approach differs from Archangeli & Pulleyblank's au- 
tosegmental approach most substantially in the treatment of trans- 
parency. A&P adopt the No Gapping Constraint, which states that a 
multiply-linked feature cannot skip over a potential target; thus, 
transparent segments CANNOT be within the domain of a spreading 
feature in phonological representations."^' In contrast, in the ODT 
analysis of transparency, a transparent segment is within the F-do- 
main of harmony, but is simply immune from realizing the feature 
[F] due to a highly ranked feature occurrence constraint. The No 
Gapping Constraint plays no role in the ODT analysis of harmony, and 
is really only meaningful under the assumption that harmony in- 
volves association of a single token of the harmony feature to multi- 
ple anchors. As noted earlier, the ODT analysis does not require mul- 
tiple association — but it is clear that if multiple association is allowed, 
and if the No Gapping constraint is part of universal grammar, then 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

the ODT analysis of transparency would lead to a violation of the No 
Gapping Constraint.'' 

4. Opacity in round harmony 

With this much in the way of background, let us turn now to exem- 
plification of ODT in the analysis of round harmony. Many round , 
harmony systems show an asymmetrical harmony of [Round] across I 
high and low vowels. For example, in Turkish, [Round] extends right- Vi, 
ward across a sequence of high vowels and is blocked when it U 
encounters a low vowel (Clements & Sezer 1982). 

(17) Turkish Round Harmony 

ip-in ip-ler-in 'rope' 

yiiz-iin yiiz-ler-in 'face' 

kiz-jn kjz-lar-tn 'girl' 

pul-un pul-lar-in 'stamp' 

The opaque behavior of low vowels can be accounted for by the 
CLASH constraint *[Rd,Low]. Although the round low vowel lol ap- 
pears in underlying representations, it is never derived in the round 
harmony system. To explain why underlying low round vowels sur- 
face, despite the presence of the CLASH constraint in the grammar, it 
suffices to rank Parse[Rd] and Parse[Low] above *[Rd,Low], as shown 
in the following tableau, which evaluates surface candidates for a 
schematic underlying form CoC. 

(18) Ranking *[Rd,Low] 


Parse[Rd] Parse[Low] 


# a. CoC 

b. CaC 

c. CuC 




Ranking the CLASH constraint and Expression above WSA de- 
rives the opacity of the low vowels, in exactly the same way that 
opaque low vowels are derived in the ATR harmony of Idealized 
Pulaar. An illustrative tableau is shown below, where surface candi- 
dates for a schematic underlying sequence of /0...A...I/ are 
evaluated.' 2 

(19) Evaluation: opaque low vowels in Turkish round harmony 

UR: A I 

BA-lf Prs[Rd] Prs[Lo] 

*[Rd,Low] Expr 


# a. (0) a t 



b. (a a t) 

1* 1* 

c. (0 u) 


d. (0 a u) 

* I* 


Note that the CLASH constraint *[Round,Low] is violated by candi- 
dates (a,c,d), because of the specification of these two features on the 
underlying root vowel lol. Only (b) satisfies CLASH, but fails since 



u u 

(*u i) 



Cole & Kisseberth: An optimal domains theory of harmony 109 

the underlying feature specifications are not parsed into F-domains. 
Candidate (c) violates CLASH twice: once for the root vowel, and a 
second time by realizing [Round] on the low suffix vowel. In this case 
(a) wins, even though it has failed to satisfy WSA, and has only a 
narrow harmony domain. 

5. Parasitic domains in round harmony 

Consider next the round harmony system of Kazakh, as described in 
Korn (1969). Like Turkish, Kazakh has a palatal/velar harmony that 
extends left-to-right across the word. But the Kazakh system is a lit- 
tle more complicated than Turkish, because the round harmony op- 
erates differently in palatal and velar harmonic words. In velar har- 
monic words, low vowels are opaque to round harmony, just as in 
Turkish. Licit and illicit vowel sequences are listed below: 

(20) Kazakh round harmony: velar harmonic words 

underlying surface 

Low targets: u A — > u a (*u o) 

o A -> 

Hi targets: u I -^ 

o I -> 

The CLASH constraint *[Rd,Low] can derive opacity here, just as 
in Turkish, with the same grammar, repeated in (21). 

(21) Kazakh grammar (preliminary) 
*[Rd,Low], Expression » WSA-rt 

Now, observe that in palatal harmonic words there is uniform 
round harmony — both high and low vowels are targets, as seen in 

(22) Kazakh round harmony: palatal harmonic words 

underlying surface 

Low targets: u A -> ii o (*u e) 

o A -> 

Hi targets: ii I — > 

o I ^ 

Clearly, the *[Rd,Low] constraint is violated in the surface forms 
of some palatal harmonic words. We analyze this as a case of para- 
sitic harmony, where one feature spreads within an F-domain de- 
fined by another feature. The Parasitic constraint, formulated in (23), 
requires the round domain to be co-extensive with the palatal do- 
main of the sponsoring anchor. 

(23) Parasitic(Rd,Pal): If two anchors are in the same [Pal] 
domain then they must be in the same [Rd]-domain. 

Parasitic(Rd,Pal) is ranked above *[Rd,Low] with the result that 
*[Rd,Low] will be violated in palatal harmonic words in order to sat- 
isfy the Parasitic constraint. The following tableau demonstrates the 
effects of these two ranked constraints. 

o o 

(*o e) 

ii ii 

(*u i) 

6 ii 



Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

(24) Evaluation: Kazakh round harmony in palatal harmonic words 

UR: u A 





# (u o) 
(ii) e 
(u e) 





UR: u I 

# (u U) 
(u) i 
(ii i) 



The grammar with the Parasitic(Rd,Low) constraint succeeds in 
selecting the correct surface candidate. Of course, ODT must explain 
the underlying motivation for the Parasitic constraint, and determine 
which features may be dependent on one another in this fashion. We 
suggest that the Parasitic constraint is motivated in this case by the 
marked status of the feature combination [Rd,Pal]. In general terms, 
the Parasitic constraint provides a mechanism for extending a 
marked feature combination, thereby increasing perceptibility. In 
terms of the principles discussed earlier, the Parasitic constraint in- 
stantiates the Extension principle in the constraint grammar, by pro- 
longing marked configurations.'-'' We leave it for future research to 
explore the full set of Parasitic constraints, and to determine whether 
all cases of parasitic harmony involve marked feature combi- 
nations. '^ 

6. Faithfulness vs. harmony 

Lastly, we turn our attention to Uyghur, described in Hahn (1991). In 
this language round harmony targets only the high epenthetic vowel, 
as shown in (25a). Both epenthetic and suffix vowels undergo 
palatal/velar harmony, but suffix vowels never harmonize with the 
root vowel in roundness, as shown in (25b). (25c) shows that suffix 
vowels may be inherently round. 

(25) Uyghur round harmony 

a. underlying surface 

iizm-m iiziimiim 

klub- kulup 

c6ml-s comolus 

b. kiic-I kiici 
k6n,l-dln kon.iildin 
yiiz-m-dln yiiziimdin 

c. kiy-gU kiygii 
kat-gU katkii 
qat-gU qatqu 
qur-gU qurgu 

my grape 

'my immersion' 
'its power' 
'from the heart' 
'from my face' 
wear' DECID. 
go' DECID. 
'harden' DECID. 
'dry' DECID. 

The asymmetry in the harmonic behavior of underlying and 
epenthetic vowels is accounted for in ODT by appealing to the Faith- 

Cole & Kisseberth: An optimal domains theory of hamiony 111 

fulness condition. We explode the *Insert[Rd] constraint into two sep- 
arate constraints: 

(26) Exploding Faithfulness 

(a) *Insert[Rd] on an underlying anchor 

(b) *Insert[Rd] on an anchor 

The (a) constraint is more restricted, and has no effect on in- 
sertion on an epenthetic anchor. The basic idea here is that epen- 
thetic elements contain no underlying structure which the Faithful- 
ness constraints *Insert and Parse must preserve. This makes 
epenthetic elements better servants to feature extension. The two 
*Insert constraints are in an 'elsewhere' ranking, (a) >> (b). In 
Uyghur, the Expression constraint that drives round harmony is 
ranked between the two *Insert constraints, which means that [Rd] 
will never be inserted on an underlying anchor, but may be inserted 
on an epenthetic anchor to satisfy harmony. The ranked constraints 
are as follows: 

(27) Constraint grammar for Uyghur round harmony 
*Insert[Rd]-(a) » BA-lf, Express[Rd] » WSA-rt »*Insert[Rd]-(b) 

The analysis of these facts in AP, which has no analogue of 
Faithfulness, is extremely problematic. It would seem to require ei- 
ther an ad-hoc specification of [-Rd] on unrounded suffix vowels, 
with epenthetic vowels unspecified, or a restriction on round har- 
mony to the effect that it can apply only to a completely featureless 

7. Summary 

We have proposed ODT as an alternative to the autosegmental 
view of assimilation as spreading. In the ODT approach, a feature [F] 
is realized within a phonological constituent, termed F-domain. An F- 
domain is restricted to the span of the sponsoring anchor in the un- 
marked case, but in cases of F-harmony the domain has wide scope, 
defined in terms of prosodic or morphological constituents. The 
Expression constraint requires that within an F-domain all anchors 
should be specified for [F]; however, this constraint may conflict with 
feature occurrence constraints that restrict the affiliation of [F]. The 
ranking of the constraints on alignment of F-domains with the Ex- 
pression and feature occurrence constraints gives rise to a typology 
of harmony systems with different properties of transparency and 
opacity. These results are achieved without any appeal to feature un- 
derspecification or feature geometry, because harmony is not viewed 
as autosegmental spreading. Finally, we see that the Faithfulness 
condition in ODT provides an account for why epenthetic elements 
may undergo harmony processes that do not affect underlying 

112 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 


* Thanks to Jose Hualde, Laura Downing, Donca Steriade, David 
Odden, and Akin Akinlabi for comments and discussion. 

1 Underspecification is allowed only when the surface specifi- 
cation is ALWAYS determined by an external source, such as the case 
of suffix vowels in Turkish, whose specification for Palatal/Velar is 
always determined by a stem vowel via harmony. The suffix vowels 
never stand alone in a form without a harmony trigger. 

2 Halle (1993) reaches the same conclusion, based on the analy- 
sis of a range of assimilation phenomena within the framework of 

3 Our view is that individual features combine by affiliating to 
an anchor, characterizing the phonetic properties of that anchor. The 
anchor alone represents a bare segment, a unit which, in OT termino- 
logy, may be inserted, parsed, or underparsed. An anchor may 
SPONSOR features in UR, or may become affiliated with features that 
are sponsored by other anchors. For the ODT analysis of harmony it is 
not necessary to specify any hierarchic or geometric properties in the 
relation between features and anchors. We leave open the possibility 
that there may be other phenomena which motivate the expression 
of dependency between features or between features and their an- 
chors, in which case additional structure may be imposed on the rep- 
resentations themselves. 

^ The reader who is unfamiliar with this theory is referred to 
McCarthy & Prince (1993) and Prince & Smolensky (1993) for a more 
detailed presentation of the theory. 

5 We are considering here only those cases where harmony is 
triggered by an underlying feature specification. There is reason to 
believe that a less restricted version of BA (and Wide Scope Align- 
ment — see below) is active in languages where an inserted feature 
can also trigger assimilation. 

6 Expression can be satisfied either by inserting individual to- 
kens of [F] on each anchor in an F-domain, or by establishing multi- 
ple associations between a string of anchors and a single token of [F], 
as in the standard autosegmental representation. The ODT analysis of 
harmony simply does not require multiple associations to account for 
transparency or opacity; however, we allow that there may be inde- 
pendent reasons to include multiply linked features in the set of 
well-formed representations. 

^ We assume that the general constraint *Insert is exploded 
into a family of constraints, one for each feature and each type of 
structure in the set of phonological primitives. 

^ While we do not explicitly rule out this scenario, it is likely 
that such a grammar does not exist. There would be no surface cues 

Cole & Kisseberth: An optimal domains theory of harmony 113 

for the existence of a wide scope F-domain if it never induces F-har- 
mony due to the ranking of *Insert [F] over Expression. 

9 The harmony systems of actual Pulaar and Kinande involve 
additional complications which do not affect the demonstration that 
is the focus of this discussion. See Archangeli & Pulleyblank (1993) 
for discussion and comparison of these two harmony systems within 
an extended autosegmental framework. The characterization of 
Pulaar and Kinande below is based on the data presented in that 

10 A&P treat transparency in Kinande at the level of phonetic 
implementation. Low vowels are targets for the phonological ATR 
harmony, but only variably realize the feature [ATR]. They propose 
that a late, phonetic principle allows [ATR] to be realized on a low 
vowel under special prosodic conditions. Elsewhere, a [+ATR] specifi- 
cation on a low vowel will simply fail to be realized. Thus, there is 
really no transparency at the phonological level in Kinande. However, 
they acknowledge genuine phonological transparency, as in their 
analysis of Wolof, in which case the No Gapping constraint rules out 
the sort of treatment proposed in ODT. 

' 1 Our current position is that there is no clear need for the No 
Gapping constraint in ODT, and therefore it is not adopted. The larger 
issue to be addressed here is the role of locality as a condition on the 
statement of phonological constraints. Akinlabi (this volume) and 
Kirchner (1993) propose an OT treatment of harmony which main- 
tains the No Gapping constraint. Although neither proposal addresses 
the treatment of transparency, we imagine that it would be possible 
to violate No Gapping by allowing multiple association to skip over a 
transparent segment. Differences between their OT approach and the 
domains-based approach advocated here would arise in the analysis 
of systems which manifest BOTH transparency and opacity, and are 
considered in more detail in our work in progress. 

'- Capital letters represent unspecified suffix vowels. Since in 
Turkish the suffix vowels are ALWAYS in the domain of root-con- 
trolled harmony, there is no evidence for any underlying specifica- 
tion for the features Palatal, Velar, or Round. In cases like this, we 
allow the possibility that the harmonizing vowels are unspecified in 
underlying form, as suggested by Steriade (1993). The alternative 
would be to arbitrarily assign some underlying features to the suffix 
vowels. In that case, the constraint grammar would have to be con- 
structed so that the features [Round], [Palatal], and [Velar] on a suffix 
are realized ONLY when they are in the same F-domain as the root 
vowel. This approach would also require separating the Parse con- 
straints into two groups: Parse[F] for root vowels, and Parse[F] for 
suffix vowels. The latter set would have to be ranked below the WSA 
constraint that gives rise to the large harmony domain, forcing a suf- 
fix vowel to lose its underlying specification in favor of realizing the 
harmony feature in the wide scope F-domain. On the other hand, the 
Parse constraints for root vowels would have to be ranked above 

114 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

WSA, to ensure that an underlying feature specification on a root 
vowel is always parsed, and always triggers harmony. (This discus- 
sion ignores the treatment of disharmonic roots, which however pose 
no problem for the ODT approach.) 

•3 Our account of parasitic harmony as the principled extension 
of a marked feature combination is inspired by a suggestion in 
Steriade (1993). 

•■* Preliminary results are promising. In addition to Kazakh, 
Yawelmani round harmony can be analyzed with the use of Parasitic 
constraints involving [Rd,Low] and [Rd,Hi]. 


AKINLABI, a. 1994. Alignment constraints in ATR harmony. Paper 
presented at FLSM V. 

Archangeli, D., & D. Pulleyblank. 1993. Grounded phonology. Cam- 
bridge, MA: MIT Press. 

Clements, G. N., & E. Sezer. 1982. Vowel and consonant disharmony in 
Turkish. The structure of phonological representations: Part II, 
ed. by H. van der Hulst and N. Smith, 213-356. Dordrecht- 
Holland: Foris. 

Hahn, R. 1991a. Spoken Uyghur. Seattle: University of Washington 

1991b. Diachronic aspects of regular disharmony in Modern 

Uyghur. Studies in the historical phonology of Asian languages, 
ed. by W. Boltz & M. Shapiro, 68-101. Amsterdam: John 

Halle, M. 1993. Feature geometry and feature spreading. MIT, MS. 

KiRCHNER, R. 1993. Turkish vowel harmony and disharmony: an op- 
timality theoretic account. Presented at Rutgers Optimality 
Workshop I (ROW-I). 

KiSSEBERTH, C. 1993. Optimal domains: a theory of Bantu tone: A case 
study from Isixhosa. Presented at Rutgers Optimality Workshop 
I (ROW-I). 

KORN, D. 1969. Types of labial vowel harmony in the Turkic lan- 
guages. Anthropological Linguistics 11:98-106. 

McCarthy, J., & A. Prince. 1993. Generalized alignment. University of 
Massachusetts and Rutgers University, MS. 

Prince, A., & P. Smolensky. 1993. Optimality Theory. Rutgers Univer- 
sity and University of Colorado, MS. 

Pulleyblank, D. 1989. Patterns of feature cooccurrence: The case of 
nasality. Arizona Phonology Conference 2:98-115. 

Steriade, D. 1993. Underspecification and markedness. To appear in 
Handbook of phonology, ed. by J. Goldsmith. Oxford: Basil 

Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Michel DeGraff 
University of Michigan 

This paper examines certain word-order differences 
between Haitian (Ha) and its lexifier, French (Fr), and re- 
duces these differences to ONE morphological distinction 
between the two languages. These configurations revolve 
around the placement of verbs and of object pronouns, and 
the one dissimilarity to which their differences are reduced 
concerns verbal inflectional morphology, and the lack 
thereof, in Fr and Ha, respectively. 

1. Adverb placement in Ha and in Fr 

Let us begin with the central patterns to be explained.-^ As presented 
by Dejean 1992, these data directly concern whether a transitive 
verb must remain adjacent to its object NP in Ha and in Fr. In par- 
ticular, can adverbs intervene between a verb and its object NP? The 
adverbs I focus on constitute a relatively small class, the class of ad- 
these adverbs will be considered in this paper). "^ The distribution of 
these adverbs in Ha and in Fr is very telling: on the right of the finite 
verb in Fr and on the left of the main verb in Ha. 

Starting with (1) and (2), please focus on the adverbs deja/deja 
'already' (in bold). In (la). Ha deja cannot intervene between the verb 
pase 'iron' and its object rad yo 'the(ir) clothes', (lb) indicates that 
deja may precede the V-NPobj sequence. Thus, (1) illustrates the Ha 
contrast: *V ADV NPobj vs. ADV V NPobj-'' 

(1) a. *Bouki pase deja rad yo (Ha) 

Bouki iron already cloth the 

b. Bouki deja pase rad yo 

'Bouki has already ironed the(ir) clothes' 

Compare (1) with its Fr counterparts in (2), where Fr deja, unlike 
Ha deja, may intervene between the finite verb and its object (cf. (la) 
vs. (2a)) and must not precede the verb (cf. (lb) vs. (2b)). More suc- 
cinctly, the Fr order is V//„ ADV NPobj vs. *ADV V/,>, NPobj: 

(2) a. Bouqui repasse deja le linge (Fr) 

Bouqui iron already the cloth 

'Bouqui is already ironing the clothes' 
b. *Bouqui deja repasse le linge 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

Examples (3)-(18) provide other data (borrowed, and adapted, 
from Dejean) which approximate (l)/(2). 

In (3)-(6), the 'interesting' items are sentence-level temporal ad- 
verbs: toujou/toujours in the sense of 'still' and janm/jamais 'never'. 

(3) a. *Menm le yo pini Sentaniz, li renmen 

even when 3pl punish Sentaniz 3sg love 
toujoumanman 1 (1 

still mother 3sg 

b. Menm le yo pini Sentaniz, li toujou renmen manman 1 

'Even when they punish Sentaniz, she still loves her mother' 

(4) a. Meme punie, Saintanise aime toujours 

even punished Saintanise loves still 
b. *Meme punie, Saintanise toujours aime sa mere 

(5) a. *Jak pa di janm bonjou 

Jack NEG say never good-day 

Jak pa janm di bonjou 

Jack never says good morning' 

(6) a. Jacques ne dit jamais bonjour (Fr) 

Jack NEG say never good-day 

b. *Jacques jamais ne dit bonjour 

(7)-(14) give examples with degree adverbials: 

(7) a. *Boukinet kite preske Bouki 

Boukinet abandon almost Bouki 

b. Boukinet preske kite Bouki 

'Boukinet almost abandoned Bouki' 

(8) a. Bouquinette abandonna presque Bouqui 

Bouquinette abandoned almost Bouqui 

b. *Bouquinette presque abandonna Bouqui 

(9) a. *Bouki manje (si) telman bannann... 

Bouki eat so abundantly bananas 

b. Bouki si telman manje bannann... 
'Bouki so abundantly eats bananas...' 

(10) a. Bouqui mange (si) tellement 

Bouki eats so abundantly... 

b. *Bouqui (si) tellement mange ... 

(11) a. *Bouki renmen tre ti ronm li 

Bouki like much little rum 3sg 

b. Bouki tre renmen ti ronm li 
'Bouki likes his little rum a lot' 

(12) a. Bouqui aime beaucoup son petit rhum 

Bouki likes much his little rum 

b. *Bouqui beaucoup aime son petit rhum 











DeGraff: Morphology-syntax interface in creolization 117 

(13) a. *Bouki renmen tro ronm (Ha) 

Bouki like too-much rum 

b. Bouki tro renmen ronm 
'Bouki likes rum too much' 

(14) a. Bouqui aime trop le rhum (Fr) 

Bouki likes too-much the rum 

b. *Bouqui trop aime le rhum 

Finally, (15)-(18) give examples with predicate-level adverbs: 

(15) a. *Elev la konn byen leson an (Ha) 

student the know well lesson the 

b. Elev la byen konn leson an 

'The student knows the lesson well' 

(16) a. L'eleve connait bien la le^on (Fr) 

the-student knows well the lesson 

b. *L'eleve bien connait la le9on 

(17) a. *Elev la etidye mal leson an (Ha) 

student the study bad lesson the 

b. Elev la mal etidye leson an 

'The student has poorly studied the lesson' 

(18) a. L'eleve etudie mal la le9on (Fr) 

the-student studies bad the lesson 

b. *L'eleve mal etudie la le^on 

Taken together, (1)-(18) instantiate a robust contrast in Ha/Fr 
verb placement. While the relevant class of adverbs is restricted, the 
patterns they give rise to recurrently substantiate ADV V NPobj in Ha 
vs. Vfin ADV NPobj in Fr. In all these instances, although the lexemes 
are semantically and (often) phonetically related, they consistently 
occur on opposite sides of the verb. That the Ha transitive verb is al- 
ways adjacent to its object, unlike Fr, has motivated Dejean (1992) to 
postulate that Ha obeys a 'strict adjacency principle', a principle 
which would not apply in Fr.^ 

I will argue that Pollock's (1989), Belletti's (1990) and 
Chomsky's (1991) insights regarding the syntax of verbal morphology 
provide us with an elegant link between, on the one hand, the above 
verb-placement facts, in (1)-(18), and, on the other hand, the ab- 
sence vs. presence of verbal inflectional suffixes in Ha and in Fr, re- 
spectively. In this view, Dejean's 'strict adjacency principle' for Ha 
(cf. its absence in Fr) is not a deep-seated principle, but is only the 
surface manifestation of more fundamental properties. Namely. Ha 
verbs are not morphologically inflected whereas Fr verbs are, which 
in the PoUockian framework has specific word-order consequences 
congruent with (1)-(18). 


118 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

2. Verbal morphology in Ha and in Fr 

Many Creole languages manifest relatively little morphological in- 
flection. In Ha, the verb bears neither suffixal agreement markers, as 
shown in (19), nor suffixal Tense-Mood-Aspect (TMA) markers, as 
shown in (20) — Ha TMA markers are FREE morphemes which precede 
the (uniformly INVARIABLE) main verb. 

(19) { Mwen I Ou I Li I Nou I Yo } renmen Boukinet (Ha) 
{ Isg I 2sg/2pl I 3sg I Ipl I 3pl } love Boukinet 
'{II You I He/She/It I We I They } love(s) Boukinet' 

(20) Boukinet { te I ap I a } renmen Bouki (Ha) 
Boukinet { ANT I FUT I IRR } love Bouki 

'Boukinet { loved I will love I would love } Bouki' 

In (19) and (20), the Ha verb remains uninflected for agreement 
and TMA. In (21) and (22), aimer 'to love' is inflected for both 
agreement and TMA.^ 

(21) J'aim-e 'Isg-^+lsg' Nous aim-ons 'Ipl c:+lpr (Fr) 
Tu aim-es '2sg 9+2sg' Vous aim-ez '2pl 9+2pr 
Il/Elle aim-e '3sg+m/f ^+3sg' Ils/Elles aim-ent '3pl+m/f f7+3pr 

(22) a. Bouquinette aim-ait Bouqui (Fr) 

Bouquinette loved Bouqui 

b. Bouquinette aim-era Bouqui 
Bouquinette will-love Bouqui 

c. Bouquinette aim-erait Bouqui si ... 
Bouquinette would-love Bouqui if 

3. Verb placement and morphology 

Considering Pollock 1989, among others, I believe that there is 
somewhat of a cause-and-effect relationship between the data in the 
two previous sections, i.e., that verbal morphology 'drives' verb 

Recall that Ha has ADV V NPobj order and NO verbal suffixes, and 
that Fr has V/,„ ADV NPobj order AND verbal suffixes. How does mor- 
phology drive verb placement? Pollock 1989 proposes to derive ver- 
bal inflectional morphology at syntax. ^ Assuming X-bar theory, each 
subject-verb agreement and TMA inflection is generated as the head 
of its own projection, Agr(eement)P, T(ense)P, etc; see (23a) where -a . 
'3sg' is Agr", -er 'future' is T^ and the root aim- is V (also see Belletti M 
1990 and Chomsky 1991). At syntax, the root of the inflected verb ▼ 
leaves the VP and undergoes cyclic-successive head-movement to 
the various inflectional heads to collect its inflectional suffixes: 

DeGraff: Morphology-syntax interface in creolization 


- e r 


Before Fr V-raising 

AgrO TP 

[[aim,-er]y-a] ^ 



aim Bouquinette 





i[ Bouquinette 

After Fr V-raising 

The movement in (23) gives rise to the Fr word-order V^,„ADV 
NPobj: in (23b), once the Fr (transitive) verbal root leaves VP, VP- 
adjoined adverbs will intervene between the verb and its object. 
Let's now go back to Ha and see what happens there. Given standard 
assumptions regarding D-structure, Ha and Fr would have the same 
underlying order: 






VO NPobj 

D-structure verb-object adjacency in Ha AND in Fr 

The adverb placement contrasts above are simply caused by 
verb movement in Fr and lack of verb movement in Ha. After V- 
raising to AgrO in Fr, any unmoved material remaining below TP and 
above V will intervene between the verb and its object: 



Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 




(deja \ 

tou jours \ 

jamais \ 

presque 1 
(si) tenement I 

trop f 

beaucoup I 

bien I 

mal / 






After Fr V-raising (across an adverb) 

As for Ha, it has virtually no inflectional morphology to induce 
verb raising, and the verb stays in situ, inside VP, with the adverbs 
deja, toujou, etc., surfacing pre-verbally: 



S-stTUCture verb-object adjacency in Ha 

DeGraff: Morphology-syntax interface in creolization 121 

Recapitulating, the central point so far is that the approach to 
verbal morphology advocated by Pollock 1989, Belletti 1990, 
Chomsky 1991, etc., tie the data in (1)-(18) to that in (19)-(22) in re- 
vealing ways. The Ha/Fr adverb-placement contrasts are a direct re- 
sult of Fr verb movement (over VP-adjoined material) to pick up in- 
flectional suffixes vs. absence of verb movement in Ha given that 
there are no suffixes to be picked up: the underlying order Adv V 
NPobj shown in (24) surfaces intact in Ha (26) whereas V-raising 
takes place in Fr producing the V/,„ ADV NPobj surface order in (25). 

4. Morphology and verb placement: A closer look 

4.1. Fr finite and non-finite verbs in Fr vs. Ha main verbs 

Additional data and insights from Pollock 1989 support the present 
approach to the Ha/Fr contrasts. (27)-(31) compare Fr placement of 
finite vs. infinitival verbs with respect to the adverb a peine 'hardly' 
and the sentence negation marker pas. Given Section 3, I can now 
safely take such placement to be symptomatic of (the absence of) 
verb raising. Simplifying Pollock's treatment, let's take the order V 
Adv or V NEG to indicate verb raising and the order ADV V or NEG V 
to indicate no verb raising. 

We've seen the Fr finite verb raise out of VP over adverbs, like a 
peine. The Fr finite verb also raises over the sentence negation 
marker pas: 

(27) ... Verb/,„. . . . NEG/Adv . . . [vp ti ...]... (Fr) 

The movement schematized in (27) is instantiated in (28), 
adapted from Roberts 1993, and previously discussed in Kayne 1975, 
Emonds 1978, Pollock 1989, Belletti 1990 and Chomsky 1991, among 

(28) a. Pierre comprend/ a peine [v/p ti I'italien ] (Fr) 

Peter understands hardly Italian 
'Peter hardly understands Italian' 
b. Jean n'aime, pas[vp ti Marie] 

John NEG-love NBG Mary 

'John doesn't love Mary' 

Recall that the Fr finite verb MUST raise out of VP at syntax: 

(29) a. *Pierre a peine [yp comprend I'italien ] (Fr) 
b. *Jean ne pas [yp aime Marie ] 

However, infinitivals, unlike finite verbs, may follow adverbs 
and negation at S-structure, remaining in VP:^ 

(30) . . . NEG/Adv [yp y^xhnon-fui ■ ■ • ] • • • (Fr) 

(31) a. A peine [yp comprendre I'italien ], ce n'est pas un 

hardly to-understand the-Italian it NEG-is NEG a 



'To hardly understand Italian is not a crime' (Fr) 

122 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

b. Ne pas[vp aimer ses parents ] est une 

NBG NEG love one's parents is a 

mauvaise chose 

bad thing 

'Not to love one's parents is a bad thing' 

The Fr finite/non-finite dichotomy of (27) vs. (30) somewhat 
replicates the Ha vs. Fr contrasts in verb placement of Section 1. If 
verbal morphology is what drives verb movement, then this is ex- 
pected: Fr non-finite verbs resemble Ha verbs in not being as richly 
inflected as Fr finite verbs. 'O 

4.2. Sentential negation in Ha and in Fr 

The surface distribution of Ha and Fr negation markers further likens 
the surface distribution of Fr infinitivals with that of Ha verbs. Like 
Ft pas in (31b), Ha pa of SENTENTIAL negation (along with the adverbs 
discussed above) precedes the main verb:ii 

(32) . . . NEG [vp Verb... ] ... (Ha) 

(33) a. Boukinet pa [vp renmen Bouki ] (Ha) 

Boukinet NE)G renmen Bouki 

'Boukinet does not love Bouki' 
b. *Boukinet renmen, pa [yp ti Bouki ] 

Compare the placement of Ha pa in (33) with that Fr pas in 
(28b), (29b), and (31b). Ft pas of sentential negation FOLLOWS the fi- 
nite verb and PRECEDES the non-finite (nonauxiliary) verb while HA 
pa PRECEDES the main verb in all clauses. '2 

4.3. Verb placement in mesolectal Louisiana Creole 
(Rottet 1993) 

Mesolectal Louisiana Creole (MLC) offers some interesting 'variations' 
regarding verb syntax. These variations mesh nicely with my ongo- 
ing investigation, in that MLC's verb syntax seems to be an hybrid of 
two markedly different sub-grammars: one, Ha-like, isolating, and 
the other, Fr-like, affixal. The varying distribution of MLC verb 
forms, as analyzed by Rottet 1993 and presented below, might 
'reflect competition among alternative licensing principles for entire 
grammatical sub-systems', borrowing Kroch's (1989:239) phrase. 

Mesolectal varieties of LC have short and long forms for many 
verbs: aret/arete 'stop', frem/freme 'shut', geb/geble 'gamble', 
kup/kupe 'cut', kuv/kuve'^ 'coyer', mozh/mozhe 'eat', vje/vini 'come', 
vo/von 'sell', etc. (Only the long forms are used in the basilect.) As 
Rottet convincingly argues, the short form corresponds to a Fr form 
inflected for tense whereas the long form is the typically uninflected 
Creole form. This correspondence is revealed in the distribution of 
these forms: as indicated by adverb placement in (34) and placement 
of negation in (35), the long form stays inside VP, in the (a) exam- 
ples, whereas the short form raises out of VP, in the (b) examples: 

DeGraff: Morphology-syntax interface in creolization 123 

(34) a. Fo tuzhu kupe zC'b-la (MLC) 

K) always cut grass-the 

'It's always necessary to cut the grass' 
b. Fo to kup tuzhu ze'^b-la 
PO 2sg cut always grass-the 
'You always have to cut the grass' 

(35) a. Mo p a mozhe (MLC) 

1 sg NEG / eat 

'I haven't eaten' or 'I didn't eat' 
b. Mo mozh p a 

1 sg eat NEG 

'I don't eat' 

Moreover, the short forms are incompatible with non-affixal 
TMA markers. In MLC, morphologically-free TMA markers entail the 
use of the (non-inflected) long form, as in (36) where inflected son 
cannot co-occur with non-affixal ape. 

(36) Le klosh ape {sonel*son} astc (MLC) 
the bell PROG ring now 

'The bells are ringing now' 

Thus, MLC manifests two competing verbal systems, one with 
verb raising (with short forms) like Fr, and the other without verb 
raising (with long forms), like Ha; see Rottet 1993 for further details 
and analysis. This provides further evidence for the correlation be- 
tween inflectional morphology and verb movement. 

5. Verb placement in English diachrony 

So far, I've compared Ha and, briefly, MLC to their lexifier, Fr. The 
picture emerging is one where creolization eliminates verb move- 
ment via erosion of verbal inflections. Is this true only of 

Let's step outside creolization and examine one scenario of grad- 
ual diachronic change (in Roberts 1993) where a specific set of word- 
order changes is connected to a drastic decline in verbal inflections, 
in fashion similar to the above Fr/Ha patterns. Starting with Modern 
English (NE), note that, by our now-familiar diagnostics, it has 
restricted verb raising: 

(37) a. *John loves not Mary 

b. *Peter understands hardly Italian 

Compare the synchronic data in (37) with: its correct NE versions 
in (38); the Fr data in (39) (=(28)); and the Middle English (ME) data 
in (40) (from Roberts 1993, Ch. 3, and Kroch 1989). 

(38) a. John does not love Mary 

b. Peter hardly understands Italian 

124 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(39) a. Jean n'aime pasMarie (Fr) 

John NEG-aime NEG Mary 

'John doesn't love Mary' 
b. Pierre comprend a peine I'italien 
Peter understands hardly Italian 
'Peter hardly understands Italian' 

(40) a. It serveth not 

'It doesn't serve' (i.e, it is of no use) 

[1513: The battle of Flodden— Roberts 1993:239] 

b. Wepyng and teres counforteth not dissolute laghers 
Weeping and tears comfort not dissolute laughers 

[1400 50: N. Love, The Myrour of the Blessyd Lyfe of 
Jesu Christ— Roberts 1993:250] 

c. The Turks ... made anone redy a gret ordonnaunce 
'The Turks ... soon prepared a large number of weapons' 

[cl482, Kaye, The Delectable Newsses of the Glorious Victory e 
of the Rhodyans agaynest the Turkes — Roberts 1993:253] 

d. Quene Ester looked never with switch an eye 
'Queen Esther never looked with such an eye' 

[Chaucer, Merchants Tale, line 1744— Kroch 1989:226] 

The NE (main) verbs in (37) and (38) do not raise out of VP.'3 
However, there was a time, before the mid- 1500s (Kroch 1989), 
when English main verbs use to be more mobile, contra (37). During 
that period, the finite (main) verb was like Fr: it could move across 
negation markers and adverbs (Pollock 1989, Kroch 1989, Roberts 
1993, among others). In a fascinating correlation, such movement 
was possible at the time when English flaunted more inflectional 
markings on its verbs. Witness, e.g., the present-tense paradigm for 
(south) ME 'sing': 

(41) singe 'Isg', singest '2sg', singeth, '3sg, Ipl, 2pl, 3pr 

[Roberts 1993:256] 

In the paradigm in (41), the verb never occurs bare, unlike syn- 
chronic present-tense sing. Thus from ME to NE, loss of verbal inflec- 
tion was accompanied by loss of main-verb movement, exactly like 
in the Fr/Ha case. Roberts 1993 explicitly attributes the loss of main- 
verb raising in English (and some Scandinavian languages) to an 
'impoverishment' in verbal inflectional morphology.'"^ 

6 Object pronouns in Ha and in Fr, and in English diachrony 

One other set of Ha/Fr configurations seems likely to have a morpho- 
logical basis: the position of object pronouns. Ha object pronouns are 
distinct from Fr object pronouns in that the former are not morpho- 
logically distinguished for nominative vs. non-nominative Case — Ha 
uses the same pronominal forms in both subject and object posi- 
tions — whereas Fr morphologically distinguishes (at least) nominative 
from non-nominative pronouns; e.g., (42) vs. (43). 



DeGraff: Morphology-syntax interface in creolization 125 

singular plural 

1 mwen nou 

2 ou nou 

3 li yo 

singular plural 

je vs. me nous 

tu vs. te vous 

il, elle vs. le, la, lui ils, elles vs. les, leur 

Alongside this morphological difference, Fr object pronouns in 

(43) are obligatorily PRE-verbal clitics, as in (44) while Ha object 
pronouns are POST-verbal; see (45). 

(44) a. Bouqui 1' aime (Fr) 

Bouqui 3sg-love 
'Bouqui loves him/her/it' 
b. * Bouqui aime le/Ia 

Bouqui love 3sg-m/3sg-f 

(45) a. Bouki renmen li (Ha) 

Bouki love 3sg 

b. *Bouki li renmen 

The Fr vs. Ha pronouns' distribution also has a counterpart in 
English diachrony. (46), cited in Roberts 1994, suggests that Old 
English (OE) had (somewhat Fr-like) object clitics. However, these 
disappeared alongside morphological Case markings on nouns. 

(46) God h i m worhte pa reaf of fellum 
God them made garments of skin 
'God made them garments of skin' 

(AHTh, 1,18; van Kemenade 1987:114) 

Roberts 1994 argues that OE cliticization was the result of 
'strong' inflectional features under AgrO, as manifested by its rich 
Case morphology. '5 These features induce leftward movement of OE 
object pronouns, from under V, across the verb. Once Case morphol- 
ogy became impoverished in ME, AgrO became 'weak' ruling out ob- 
ject cliticization (see Roberts 1994 for details). Note that under 
Roberts' AgrO-based analysis of OE cliticization, Chomsky's 1993 
'Shortest Movement' condition would allow object cliticization to the 
AgrO level only if the verb itself overtly moves to AgrO. 

Alternately, Kayne 1989a:240ff argues that movement of Fr ob- 
ject clitics to a functional head higher than V° (T°, say) depends on 
accompanying movement of V°, out of VP, to T°: such merging of V° 
and T° allows T° to L-mark VP, making VP transparent to an- 
tecedent-government of the clitic trace under V, from outside VP.'^^ 
Without the verb adjoining to it, Fr T° is not strong enough on its own 
to L-mark VP, which would then remain a barrier to antecedent- 
government from outside; the clitic trace would thus violate the ECP, 

126 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

which requires traces to be antecedent-governed (see Kayne 1989 
for details). 

The OE-ME vs. NE contrasts closely match the Ha vs. Fr ones: 
taking NE and Ha as end-points of diachronic changes, we find in 
both cases that: (i) reduction in morphological Case is associated with 
elimination of object cliticization, and (ii) reduction in verbal suffixes 
is associated with elimination of (main) verb movement. 

Kayne's (1989. 1991) and/or (one interpretation of) Roberts' 
(1994) views (plus Chomsky's (1993) 'Shortest Movement' condition) 
would then unite verb movement to object cliticization: the latter 
would happen ONLY IF the former also happens. Therefore, absence of 
verb-movement in Ha would directly account for the post-verbal 
position of Ha object pronouns. Divergent placement of verbs and 
object pronouns in Ha and in Fr is thus reduced to presence vs. ab- 
sence of verbal inflectional suffixes in Fr vs. Ha (coupled with pres- 
ence vs. absence of morphological Case markings on pronouns).'"^ 

7 Substratum influence? 

Kwa languages have played an important role in the genesis of Ha; 
see, e.g., Lefebvre & Lumsden 1992. But, after a preliminary survey 
of the relevant facts in Fon, perhaps the most influential West- 
African source languages (Lefebvre & Lumsden 1992), it seems un- 
warranted to try to explain the verb-placement facts in Ha by evok- 
ing substratum influence. 

'Adverbial' modification in Fon (Maxime da Cruz, p.c): 

(47) a. Siinu le ko li awii le we (Fon) 

man the-PL already iron cloth the 

'The men have already ironed the clothes' 
b. Azt me vi 6 tiin n ij kpikplon 6 

student the know stuff learn 

'The student knows the lesson well' 

In (47a), the adverb kd 'already' is pre-verbal, like Ha deja, but 
in (47b), ganji 'well' is clause-final whereas Ha byen 'well' may occur 
pre-verbally; see (15). Thus, the Fon adverb-placement data above 
show no clear similarity with the Ha patterns in Section 1. 

Object placement in Fon (Kinyalolo 1992; Fabb 1992): 

Object-placement data from Fon (and other Gbe languages from the 
Kwa family of Niger-Congo) make a stronger case for the limits of 
substratum influence on Ha pronoun syntax. In Fon, as well as in Ewe 
and other Gbe languages (Fabb 1992), the verb must systematically 
follow its NPobj in certain well-defined syntactic contexts, e.g. in pro- 
gressive, prospective and purpose clauses. Following is one example 


DeGraff: Morphology-syntax interface in creolization 127 

with a purposive clause and an object pronoun: xd's object, the 
pronoun nye, must be pre-verbal. 

(48) a. Ye dido nye x6 gbe (Fon) 

they take-to-the-road me beat PURPOSIVE MARKER 
'The took to the road to beat me' 
b. *Ye dido x6 nye gbe 

Thus, both PR and Gbe dialects, major source languages of Ha, 
extensively instantiate the NPobj-V order with pronouns whereas Ha 
entirely lacks such order.' ^ 

Furthermore, in Kinyalolo and Law 1994, some Fon pronouns are 
clearly shown to display morphological Case distinctions, distinctions 
which do not exist in Ha (cf. (42)):'9.20 





u n mi 
a we 

e, e e 

Ha clearly differs from both Fr and Fon in having no rule of obli- 
gatory leftward movement of NPobj ^nd in showing no overt Case 
distinctions on pronouns. The syntax of object pronouns is thus one 
area where Ha parts company with both its European ancestor and a 
group of West-African ancestors. But such divergence between Ha 
and its sources is not surprising considering the more general di- 
achronic effects of morphological loss considered above. 

8 Conclusion 

The story above should convince us that certain facts about creoliza- 
tion become better understood once compared with the relevant 
'non-Creole' diachronic processes. Indeed, the inflectional differen- 
tials in the verbal systems of Fr and Ha, two languages related via 
creolization, are also exhibited in the gradual diachrony of English 
(and perhaps other Germanic languages; see Rohrbacher 1993) with 
comparable effects on word-order. 


' A slightly shorter version of this paper is included in Papers 
from the Thirtieth Regional Meeting of the Chicago Linguistics 

2 1 thank Yves Dejean and Richard Kayne for enriching discus- 
sions and for constant inspiration. 1 also thank the U of M Thursday- 
evening gang for patiently suffering through early passes at this pa- 
per and for their probing comments. Thanks to audiences at various 
meetings throughout 1994: the Society of Pidgin & Creole Linguistics, 
the Chicago Linguistic Society, the Formal Linguistics Society of Mid- 
America, the International Linguistic Association, and the Workshop 
on Syntax and Morphology of Creole Languages in Aix-en-Provence. 

128 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

Special thanks to Enoh for welcoming me back from all these 
wanderings in the most surprising and delicious ways. 

3 Much of the data here are from a paper by. or has been dis- 
cussed with, my esteemed linguist compatriot Professor Yves 
Dejean — Mesi, Papa Iv. 

'^ Other positions such as clause-initial/final are also possible for | 
(some of) these Ha and Fr adverbs, but it is the AD-VERBAL distribu- \ 
tion which is most relevant for the purposes at hand regarding verb I 
placement. Most Ha adverbs occur generally clause-finally; Dejean 

5 The following abbreviations are used: ANT 'anterior', FUT 
'future', IRR 'irrealis', NEG 'negation', PROG 'progressive', Isg 'first 
singular', ..., 3pl 'third plural', m 'masculine', f 'feminine'. 

6 Cf. Stowell's (1981) adjacency condition on Case assignment in 
English, regarding e.g. John often reads the newspapers vs. *John 
reads often the newspaper. 

^ Such suffixal distinctions are often eroded in spoken varieties 
of Fr, except for avoir 'to have', etre 'to be', aller 'to go', voiiloir 'to 
want', pouvoir 'to be able', etc., which remain 'richly' inflected' even 
in spoken varieties; see Chaudenson et al 1993 and its references. 

8 In addition. Pollock's comparison of Fr and English verb syntax 
gives us a model that applies directly to our Ha/Fr comparison. 

9 Pollock's data and analysis are more nuanced. For example, the 
order NEG Vnon-fin does not preclude ('short') movement of Fr infini- 
tives to a head higher than VP but lower than negation. See Pollock 
1989 for details; cf. Kayne 1991. 

10 However, Ha verbs, unlike Fr infinitival verbs, are NEVER sepa- 
rated from their objects by adverbials. In the morphology/syntax 
spirit of this paper, this correlates with the fact that Fr infinitivals 
have SOME inflection, namely the infinitival suffix, whereas Ha verbs 
have no suffixes whatsoever: Ha verbs evince no distinctive fi- 
nite/non-finite morphology. 

'1 DeGraff 1992 a,b argue that TMA markers should be syntacti- 
cally analyzed as verbs. 

12 DeGraff 1993 further differentiates between Ha pa and ¥r pas, a 
arguing that the former heads NegP while the latter is in Spec(NegP). M 
If Ha pa is indeed a head, it would, unlike Fr pas, block verb-move- ^ 
ment across negation due to the Empty Category Principle (as instan- 
tiated in the Head-Movement Constraint; see Chomsky 1991). Thus, 
V-raising across Ha pa is ruled out, independently of the non-affixal 
status of Ha TMA morphemes. 

13 Although auxiliary verbs do raise out of VP, as in John has 
not seen Mary and Peter has hardly understood yesterday's Italian 
lesson; compare with (37). See Pollock 1989 for one explanation. 

DeGraff: Morphology-syntax interface in creolization 129 

'"* Also see Rohrbacher 1993 for a similar hypothesis and for 
further Germanic data supporting this view. 

•5 The AgrO node was first proposed by Kayne (1989b) for the 
locus of verb-object agreement, as in Fr past-participle agreement. 

'6 In Kayne 1991:649, object cliticization is generally adjunction 
to a functional head higher than VP. 

'^ The link between verb movement and cliticization would also 
explain why NE has no object pro-clitics even though it has kept SOME 
Case markings on pronouns. Interestingly, many Creoles with 
English-derived lexicons have completely gotten rid of Case markings 
(even on pronouns, unlike NE) and have even more restricted verb 
movement than 'standard' English — the latter still allows movement 
of auxiliaries, as in John has not read the paper vs. John not has 
read the paper, while the former doesn't, for the most part; see O'Neil 
1993 regarding absence of verbal inflectional suffixes, of verb 
movement and of pronominal Case markings in Nicaraguan English. 

18 Assume the following: (i) that Spec(VP) in these Gbe construc- 
tions is preempted by the VP-internal subject; and (ii) that Gbe 
NPobj-V sequences are instances of leftward object movement out of 
VP, as in Kinyalolo 1992 and Fabb 1992 (although the details of their 
analyses differ). Then, given Chomsky's (1993) 'Shortest Movement' 
condition, such leftward movement would require overt V-raising in 
Fon (pace Kinyalolo 1992 and Avolonto 1992, both of whom assume 
that in Fon V remains in VP). Admittedly, consolidating this 
(tentative) conclusion requires an analysis of Gbe data beyond the 
scope of this paper. (I am grateful to Kasangati Kinyalolo for insight- 
ful discussions.) 

'9 Diachritics for tones: = high tone; ' = low tone; " = mid tone. 

20 Fon also has a set of tonic pronouns. A rough generalization 
here is that pronouns in the NOM column are used as subjects of 
tensed clauses while the pronouns in the ACC column are used as 
objects of verbs and prepositions. Plural pronouns are not morpho- 
logically distinguished for Case: they uniformly correspond to the 
tonic forms. 


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en-Provence: Institut d'Etudes Creoles et Francophones; 
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from building 20, ed. by S. Kayser & K. Hale, 1-52. Cambridge: 

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a global view of pidginization and creolization, ed. by F. Byrne & 

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. 1992. The syntax of predication in Haitian. In Proceedings of 

NELS 22. Amherst, MA. 

. 1993. A riddle on negation in Haitian. Probus 5.63-93. 

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Dejean, Yves. 1992. Manifestations en Creole haitien du principe 

d'adjacence stricte. Port-au-Prince, Haiti: Institut de Linguistique 

Appliquee, MS. 
EMONDS, Joseph. 1978. The verbal complex V'-V in French. Linguistic 

Inquiry 9.151-175. 
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Fon. Journal of African Languages and Linguistics 13.1-41. 
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. 1989a. Null subjects and clitic climbing. The null-subject pa- 
rameter, ed. by O. Jaeggli & K. Safir, 239-261. Dordrecht: Kluwer. 
. 1989b. Facets of Romance past participle agreement. Dialect 

variation and the theory of grammar, ed. by P. Beninca, 85-103. 

Dordrecht: Foris. 
. 1991. Romance clitics, verb movement, and PRO. Linguistic 

Inquiry 22.647-686. 
KiNYALOLO, Kasangati. 1992. A note on word order in the progressive 

and prospective in F5n. Journal of West African Languages 

, & Paul Law. 1994. Pronominal forms and relexification. Paper 

presented at the symposium on the role of relexification in 

Creole genesis. MIT, Cambridge MA. 
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change. Language Variation and Change 1.199-244. 
LEFEBVRE, Claire, & John Lumsden. 1992. On word order in relexifica- 
tion. Travaux de Recherche sur le Creole Haitien 10.1-21. 

Universite du Quebec a Montreal. 
Meisel, Jiirgen (ed.). 1993. The acquisition of verb placement. 

Dordrecht: Kluwer. 
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guistics: problems and perspectives, ed. by C. Jones, 279-318. 

London: Longman. 
Pollock, Jean-Yves. 1989. Verb movement, universal grammar and 

the structure of IP. Linguistic Inquiry 20. 365-424. 
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Ph.D. dissertation. 

Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2. 1994 


Maarten de Wind 
University of Groningen 

Abstract: One of the distinctive properties of French com- 
plex inversion is that the subject is doubled by a subject 
clitic. Interrogative subjects like qui 'who' and lequel 
'which-one' cannot be doubled, but others like qui d'entre 
vous 'who among you' and combien de linguistes 'how many 
linguists' can. This contrast will be accounted for under the 
assumption that there is no AgrS-to-CO in French interroga- 
tives. It will be shown that the interrogative subjects that 
allow for clitic-doubling, are able to A'-bind a pro, whereas 
this possibility does not exist for subjects that disallow for 

1 Introduction ' 

In Standard French interrogative root clauses, subjects can be 
doubled by a subject clitic following the inflected part of the verb as 
the following examples show: 

(1) a Quand Marie est-elle venue? 

When Marie is she come? 
b Marie est-elle partie? 

Marie is she (cl) left? 
c Pourquoi Marie est-elle partie? 

Why Marie is she left? 

There is, however, one specific interrogative context where clitic- 
doubling is disallowed, viz. those contexts where the subject appears 
as an interrogative subject: 

(2) a *Qui est-il venu? 

who is he (cl) come? 
b *Lequel est-il le plus interessant? 

which one is it (cl) the most interesting 

These sentences become grammatical, when the subject clitic is left 

(3) a Qui est venu? 

Who is come? 
b Lequel est le plus interessant? 

Which one is the most interesting? 

134 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

Rizzi & Roberts 1989 propose an analysis which is construed as to 
avoid the combination of an interrogative subject pronoun and a 
subject clitic: Starting-point is the claim that in complex inversion 
AgrS (I in their terms) raises to C^. The effect is that preverbal sub- 
jects have to move to CP as well. Their landing-site is an A'-position 
adjoined to C, where they are assigned nominative Case. 
Interrogative subjects subsequently move to SPEC-CP, the operator- 
position. Due to its A'-status, the nominative Case-position can never 
serve as a variable. The effect is that the interrogative subject is un- 
able to bind a variable and, as a consequence, sentences like (2) are 
excluded through the ban on vacuous quantification. This analysis is, 
however, too powerful, since the combination interrogative subject- 
subject clitic does exist: 

(4) a Combien de linguistes jouent-ils aux echecs? 

how many linguists play they (cl) chess? 
b Quels auteurs ont-ils ecrit des romans de science-fiction? 

which authors have-they (cl) written novels of science 

c Qui d'entre vous joue-t-il aux echecs? 

who among you plays he (cl) chess? 

(from Obenauer, 1992) 

Obenauer trying to reconcile these quite opposite facts within 
Rizzi & Roberts' framework believes that the ungrammaticality of (2) 
should indeed be attributed to vacuous quantification caused by the 
A'-status of the Case-position of the interrogative subject adjoined to 
C. He assimilates the interrogative subjects in (4) to the lexical sub- 
jects in the 'regular' cases of complex inversion illustrated in (1). In 
other words, the interrogative subject does not have an operator- 
status. Therefore it does not need to create a variable. 

This proposal cannot be correct either, because it ignores Rizzi & 
Roberts' central idea that the very presence of a subject clitic is a di- 
agnostic of AgrS-to-C^, which, in its turn, is triggered by the presence 
of a WH-operator in SPEC-CP (cf. Rizzi 1991). The presence of the 
subject clitic in (4) indicates that the interrogative subject pronoun is 
in SPEC-CP. As a result, in (4) as well the interrogative subject heads 
an A'-chain and is excluded by the ban on vacuous quantification, 
contrary to fact. In conclusion, the grammaticality of the examples in 
(4) remains unexplained. 

I will propose an analysis that accounts for the contrast between 
(2) and (4) developed within the framework of the Minimalist 
Program as formulated in Chomsky 1992 and consistent with ideas 
about phrase-structure as proposed by Kayne 1993 in his antisym- 
metry-model. Furthermore I will make crucial use of principles for- 
mulated in my analysis of French complex inversion in De Wind 

de Wind: Checking Interrogative Subject Pronouns in French 135 

1994. I will proceed along the following lines: section (2) is devoted 
to an overview of the different analyses of interrogative subjects in 
Standard French. In section (3), I will argue, against Rizzi & Roberts 
1989, that in French complex inversion the verb only moves as far as 
AgrSO. In a derivation of complex inversion where no AgrS-to-C^ 
takes place, I will subsequently analyze the way in which the WH-el- 
ement and the lexical subject are checked. In section (4), it will be 
shown that the contrast between the sentences in (2) and those in (4) 
can be accounted for under the assumption that the interrogative 
subjects in (4) are able to A'-bind a pro, whereas this possibility does 
not exist for subjects like the ones in (2). Finally, in section (5), I will 
consider sentences containing an interrogative subject lacking the 
structure of complex inversion. I will show that in these sentences 
the interrogative subject checks its nominative Case-feature in the 
same way as subjects in French stylistic inversion, namely in SPEC- 
VP in overt syntax. I will present evidence from the Northern Italian 
dialects Fiorentino and Trentino that supports such an approach. 

2 French interrogative subject pronouns in the literature 

2.1. Rizzi & Roberts (1989) 

In Rizzi & Roberts 1989, it is assumed that in French complex in- 
version the verb always moves to C^ as part of a general process of 
I-to-CO active in interrogative contexts (in subsequent work like e.g. 
Rizzi 1991 and Roberts 1993 they explain I-to-C" through Rizzi's 
1991 WH-criterion). 

The examples in (1) show that the lexical subject in complex in- 
version occurs preverbally. Thus, it must have moved along with the 
verb to the CP. This movement is motivated by the claim that 'raising 
of I^ to C^ destroys the context in which I^ assigns Case to the subject 
in French.' Therefore, in order to get its Case the lexical subject 
moves to the CP as well. 

Movement of the lexical subject is regarded as an operation that 
adjoins the lexical subject to C. In other words, the lexical subject in 
French complex inversion is in an A '-position. This fact plays a cru- 
cial role in the account of the ungrammaticality of the examples in 
(2). Within Rizzi & Roberts framework, the interrogative subject pro- 
noun has to move to CP for two reasons: it has to get nominative Case 
and it has to move to the SPEC-CP by virtue of its WH-status. 
Therefore, in (2) qui and leqiiel first adjoin to C and then move to 
SPEC-CP, the typical operator-position for WH-elements. The relevant 
structure is illustrated in (5): 

(5) [c?Quii [c '/[cO estj-ili\ lAgrSP /,' [AgrSO tj] [vp '/" [vp Ivo Ij 


136 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

In this structure, the interrogative subject pronoun is unable to bind 
a variable, because none of the traces can be one: T does not qualify 
as a variable, since it is in an A-bar position. T' is an incorporation 
trace, while t" is in a caseless-position. They can therefore not fulfill 
the role of variable either. It follows that the sentence is ruled out by 
the ban on vacuous quantification. 

In the appendix to their (1989) paper, Rizzi & Roberts admit that 
the C'-adjoined position can very well be analyzed as an A-position 
(which they consider an additional SPEC-CP rather than a position 
adjoined to C), licensed by P in C^ on the basis of its ability to assign 
nominative Case. Therefore, vacuous quantification cannot be the 
cause of the ungrammaticality of (2). The alternative explanation is 
that the sentence is excluded on the basis of the requirement that 
the traces must be canonically head-governed. In French, canonical 
head-government is to the right. So, in (5) the trace is on the wrong 
side of AgrS in C^. Its ungrammaticality follows immediately. In sub- 
sequent work (Rizzi 1989, 1990, 1991, Roberts 1993), the sentences 
in (2) are ruled out by the head-government requirement of the ECP 
according to which each trace has to be governed by a head within 
its own immediate projection: 

(6) t must be governed by X^ within its immediate projection X'. 

Since trace t fails to be properly head-governed by AgrS in C^, it vio- 
lates the ECP. This explanation cannot be correct either, since it also 
excludes the correct sentences in (4). 

2.2. Obenauer 1992 

Since the ungrammaticality of (2a) and (2b) is attributed to trace 
t in (5) which is in the adjoined position to C, sentences like the ones 
in (4) can be grammatical only, if this position is filled. This is exactly 
what Obenauer 1992 proposes; he assumes that the subject in these 
sentences moves to a position adjoined to C and stays there. The 
subjects in (2a) and (2b), on the other hand, are assumed to move to 
SPEC-CP. The result is the configuration as illustrated in (5) which 
Obenauer excludes by means of the following principle put forth in 
his analysis in Obenauer 1985: 

(7) a is a variable iff 

(i) a = [np e] or [qp e]. 

(ii) a is in an A-position or is its SPEC. 

(iii) there is a 6 that locally A'-binds a. 

Following Rizzi & Roberts 1989, he assumes that t cannot serve as a 
licit variable, because it is in an A'-position. T' is locally A'-bound by 
t. It excludes the interrogative subject as its binder. Hence the 
ungrammaticality of (2). 

de Wind: Checking Intenogative Subject Pronouns in French 137 

It is unclear, why the interrogative subjects in (2) have to move, 
whereas those illustrated in (4) do not. It is even impossible to make 
this distinction, because the very reason why there is a postverbal 
subject clitic is movement of the verb to C^ which is, in its turn, trig- 
gered by WH-movement (cf. Rizzi & Roberts 1989, Rizzi 1991, 
Roberts 1993). This implies that also in (4) the subject moves to 
SPEC-CP, the typical WH-operator-position. The effect, however, is 
that the examples in (4) are excluded in the same way as those in (2) 
contrary to fact. In the next section, this problem will be dealt with. 

3. Deriving complex inversion 

3.1. Tlie structure of Frencii complex inversion 

One of the constraints that follow from Kayne's 1993 ideas about 
phrase-structure is that each head can only have one non-head ad- 
joined to it. The implication for the analysis of French complex in- 
version is that already from a conceptual point of view the WH-ele- 
ment and the lexical subject in example (1) must be generated in 
separate projections. However, there is also another argument that 
strongly suggests that an approach where the WH-operator and the 
lexical subject have their own projection is on the right track. 

The argument has to do with the function of the subject clitic as 
analyzed by Roberts 1993.2 According to him, the function of the 
subject clitic is to identify SPEC-AgrSP. This cannot be done by mov- 
ing the lexical subject through SPEC-AgrSP on its way to SPEC-CP, 
since this movement would cause an ECP-violation. So. we would get 
the illicit derivation for the following sentence, (which is, by the way, 
grammatical in French): 

(8) a Quand Jean est venu? 

b [cpQuand [c Jeariiico est] [AgrSP '/ Ugrso] [vp '/ Ivp [vo 

The trace the subject leaves behind after movement to SPEC-CP fails 
to meet the proper head-government requirement as formulated in 
(6). The only head capable of properly head-governing the trace of 
the subject is AgrS in C^, which clearly cannot serve as a proper 
head-governor, since it does not govern the trace within its own 
immediate projection. In order to save the sentence, a subject- 
clitic is introduced in SPEC-AgrSP. 

In Rizzi & Roberts' theory, and in subsequent elaborations, the 
subject clitic incorporates from SPEC-AgrSP into the verb in C^. This 
process is meant to provide the clitic with a Case-feature necessary 
for reasons of PF-visibility. Hulk 1992 points out that the subject 
clitic recreates, after cliticization, the problem it is supposed to avoid, 
i.e. the trace the subject clitic leaves behind after incorporation also 

138 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

causes a violation of the head-government requirement of the ECP. 
This becomes clear, when we compare (9b), the structure of (9a) to 
(8b) the structure corresponding to (8a): 

(9) a Quand Jean est-il venu? 

b [cp' Quand [cp Jean [co est-ili] UgrSP ti Ugrso] [vp [vo venu] 

The conclusion therefore must be that in an analysis where AgrS-to- 
C^ takes place, there can be no licit trace in SPEC-AgrSP. Since a trace 
is inevitable in French complex inversion, because of the cliticization 
of the subject clitic, an analysis where AgrS is assumed to move to C^ 
can never lead to a licit representation of cases of complex inversion. 
A grammatical derivation can be obtained only, if the verb moves as 
far as AgrS^. Under such an approach, the lexical subject does not 
have to move to SPEC-CP and, more importantly, we can do away 
with the assumption that movement of AgrS destroys its relationship 
with SPEC-AgrSP. This claim is implausible, because it only seems to 
hold for French. 

In conclusion, an analysis consistent with Kayne's 1993 ideas 
about phrase-structure and leading to a correct derivation of French 
complex inversion is the one where the WH-element moves to SPEC- 
CP and where the lexical subject as well as the verb wind up in 

The subject clitic then has to be in the SPEC-position of a projec- 
tion below AgrSP. This could be SPEC-TP. However, since the subject 
clitic is a typical agreement-element, I assume that it is also gener- 
ated in an AgrS-projection.3 Therefore, for the representation of the 
lexical subject and the subject clitic I adopt the double AgrS-projec- 
tion proposed by Roberts 1992 for the Northern Italian dialects and 
the French dialect Franco-Provencal Valdotain. We get structure 
(10b) for (10a) (see next page): 

3.2. Licensing mechanisms in French complex inversion 

Within structure (10), the subject clitic cannot be analyzed as an 
element that is meant to prevent an ECP-violation, because there is 
not one. In my (1994) analysis of complex inversion, I assume that 
the presence of the subject clitic is the result of a strict constraint on 
the checking relation between a head and its specifier. This 
constraint is defined as follows: 

(11) Each functional head can only license one specifier overtly and 
one specifier covertly. 

In the Minimalist Program overt movement is triggered by the need 
to check and eliminate strong features of functional heads. Thus, 

de Wind: Checking Interrogative Subject Pronouns in French 139 

(,10) a Quand Jean viendra-t-il? 

when Jean will-come he? 

overt movement of the WH-operator suggests checking of a strong 
WH-feature on a functional head. Following Rizzi 1991, I assume that 
the WH-feature of the head is located in Tense. Following Chomsky 
1992, 1 assume that the nominative Case-feature is also in Tense. 
Since the verb carries Tense to AgrSP, the WH-feature and the 
nominative Case-feature will wind up in this functional head. It, 
therefore, seems that the WH-element and the lexical subject will 
check their WH- and Case-feature against AgrSI. 

The problem, however, is that AgrSI can only check one specifier 
in overt syntax. I assume that AgrSI checks the WH-feature in a non- 
local way via a chain with C" formed on the basis of the finiteness- 
features both heads share (cf. Drijkoningen 1990 for a similar 
approach). This checking-mechanism is illustrated below. 

AgrSI is unable to check the nominative Case-feature of the 
subject. It needs help and help is provided by the subject clitic that 
for this reason cliticizes onto AgrS, inherits the Case-feature under 
agreement and then mediates it to the subject.'* This checking- 
relation is also illustrated in (12): 

Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

quand CO AgrSIP 

T I 

I +fin SPEC 

L T I 



L c 

L WH-chain 

Now we know how the WH-feature and the Case-feature are 
checked in French complex inversion, we turn to the checking-mech- 
anisms in the 'special' cases of complex inversion, i.e. those involving 
an interrogative subject pronoun. 

4 Checking interrogative 

subjects in French complex 

This section is devoted to the account of checking-mechanisms in 
cases of complex inversion involving an interrogative subject. 
Examples of this type of construction were illustrated in (4). They are 
repeated below: 

(13) a Combien de linguistes jouent-ils aux echecs? 

how many linguists play they (cl) chess? 
b Quels auteurs ont-ils ecrit des romans de science-fiction? 

which authors have-they (cl) written novels of science 

c Qui d'entre vous joue-t-il aux echecs? 

who among you plays he (cl) chess? 

Given the fact that the interrogative subjects in (13) carry the WH- 
feature as well as the Case-feature, it is unclear, whether their 
movement is triggered by the need to check both features or only 
one feature overtly; an explanation in terms of overt Case-checking 
and covert WH-checking is not implausible, for covert WH-checking 
in Standard French root-sentences is quite common as the following 
examples of WH-in-situ show:^ 

de Wind: Checking Interrogative Subject Pronouns in French 141 

(14) Tu es parti quand? 
you left when? 
'When did you leave?' 

(15) II va ou? 

he goes where? 
'Where does he go?' 

However, there is indirect evidence suggesting that WH- and Case- 
checking take place in overt syntax. In section (3.2), I showed that 
the subject clitic is present, whenever the nominative Case- and WH- 
feature need to be checked overtly. Therefore, on the basis of the 
presence of the subject clitic, we can draw the conclusion that inter- 
rogative subject pronouns in complex inversion check their Case- 
feature and their WH-feature in overt syntax. 

How do the two checking processes take place? One possibility 
could be movement to SPEC-AgrSIP, where the Case-feature is 
checked against the subject clitic and subsequent raising to SPEC-CP 
where the WH-feature is checked. C^ turns into a proper head-gov- 
ernor under agreement, so that the trace of the subject can satisfy 
the ECP. 

Rizzi & Roberts 1989 and Friedemann 1991 propose a similar 
derivation for sentences like (3a) and (3b), repeated here as (16a) 
and (16b): 

(16) a Qui est venu? 

Who is come? 
b Lequel est le plus interessant? 

Which one is the most interesting? 

In these examples, the subject checks its Case in SPEC-AgrSP (SPEC- 
IP in their analyses), then moves to SPEC-CP where it checks its WH- 
feature and turns the empty C^ into a proper head-governor under 
agreement like interrogative pronouns in English do (cf. Rizzi 1989): 

(17) a Qui est parti? 

who is left? 
b [cp Quii [co] [AgrSP tj Ugrso estj [vp parti]]] 

(18) a Who has left? 

b [cp Whoi [co] [AgrSP tj left] 

A similar account for (19a) would yield the structure in (19b): 

(19) a Qui d'entre vous joue-t-il aux echecs? 

who among you plays he (cl) chess? 
b [cp Qui d'entre vousj [co] [AgrSP tj [Agrso joue-t-il] [vp aux 


142 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

However, if Standard French and English pattern alike with respect 
to the ability of turning the empty root-C^ into a proper head-gover- 
nor, it is quite natural to expect this similarity to show up in embed- 
ded sentences as well. This expectation is not fulfilled however: 

(20) *Qui crois tu est venu? 
who think you is come? 

(21) *Qui crois tu a fait 9a? 

who think you has done that? 

Whereas in English, an empty embedded C^ is able to assume the role 
of proper head-governor, this seems to be impossible in French. The 
ungrammatical examples from French can only be rescued by intro- 
ducing a lexical complementizer agreeing with the interrogative 
subject pronoun: 

(22) Qui crois-tu qui est venu? 
who think you that is come? 

(23) Qui crois tu qui a fait 9a? 

who think you that has done that? 

So, it turns out that contrary to English, French appears to need a 
lexicalized agreeing C*^, in order to get a trace in SPEC-AgrSP properly 
head-governed. This phenomenon, commonly referred to as the 
que/qui alternation, suggests that in French an empty C^ is unable to 
fulfill the role of proper head-governor. 

If it is true that C^ cannot be a proper head-governor, when it 
contains AgrS^ (cf. section 3.1) or when it is empty, there can be no 
movement of the interrogative subject through SPEC-AgrSlP. The 
conclusion then must be that the interrogative subject either moves 
to SPEC-AgrSIP and stays there, or moves directly to SPEC-CP, 
thereby skipping SPEC-AgrSIP. 

The first option implies overt checking of the WH- and the Case- 
feature in SPEC-AgrSIP. This approach has to be discarded immedi- 
ately because the SPEC-AgrSIP cannot be an operator-position and a 
Case-position simultaneously. 

The remaining possibility is the derivation where the interroga- 
tive subject moves directly to SPEC-CP. There it checks its WH-fea- 
ture. The problem now is Case-checking which clearly has to be 
realized in a way other than movement. 

Cinque 1990 claims that elements that qualify as operators, 
sometimes A'-bind a pro instead of a variable. A'-binding of a pro is 
only allowed, if the conditions on pro-licensing as formulated in Rizzi 
1986 are met: 

(24) pro-licensing 

a pro is Case-marked by X^y (formal licensing) 

de Wind: Checking Interrogative Subject Pronouns in French 143 

b Let X be the licensing Head of an occurrence of pro: then 

pro has the grammatical specification of the features on X 
coindexed with it (formal identification) 

Given the fact that pro-elements are the non-lexicalized counterparts 
of NPs, the effect of condition (24a) is that A'-bound pro's are re- 
stricted to Case-marked NP positions. Their feature-content is 
assumed to be identified by their antecedent. 

Cinque observes that the ability of binding a pro turns out to be 
a privilege of operators. He assumes, following Chomsky 1981, that 
only bare-quantifiers, WH-phrases and null NPs in SPEC-CP can act as 
an operator. As a consequence, a bindings-relation with a pro is 
restricted to these elements. 

Under Cinque's approach, variables can be considered as the re- 
sult of movement of operators through or from a Case-position, 
whereas A'-bound pro's can be viewed as base-generated variables. 

Above we reached the conclusion that the only viable derivation 
for interrogative subjects in complex inversion is the one where they 
move directly to SPEC-CP thereby skipping SPEC-AgrSIP. The result 
is a representation where the subject can only check its Case-feature 
through a bindings-relation with a pro in SPEC-AgrSIP. This position 
turns out to be the ideal setting for pro, since it satisfies both the 
formal licensing condition as well as the formal identification condi- 
tion defined in (24) through the subject clitic, that bears the nomina- 
tive Case-feature and has (t)-features 'rich' enough to identify the 
content of pro. Furthermore, the interrogative subject being a WH- 
phrase in SPEC-CP qualifies as an operator and can therefore be a 
licit A'-binder for the /^ro-element in SPEC-AgrSIP. In conclusion, the 
establishment of an A'-chain between the interrogative subject and a 
pro is unproblematic. 

Once formally licensed and identified, the /7ro-elcmcnt in SPEC- 
AgrSIP has to be connected with the lexical subject. It can be con- 
nected, if the result is a licit chain. This requirement is satisfied, be- 
cause introduction pro in the chain formed by the interrogative sub- 
ject and its base-position yields a licit A'-chain consisting of a WH- 
operator, an A'-bound pro and the base-position of the operator. As a 
result, the structure of the sentences illustrated in (13) is as follows: 

(25) [cp quijd'entre vous [co ] [AgrSlP P'"''^/ [AgrSlo jouCj-l-ilkl [AgrSiiP tk 
[Agrsiio tj] [vp' ti [vp [vo tj aux echecs)]]]]] 

(26) [cp Combienjde linguistes [co ] lAgrSiP P''^-'/ lAgrSio jouentj-ilsk] 
[[Agrsiip tk [Agrsiio tj] [vpti [vo tj aux cchecs]]]]] 

(27) [cp Quels auteursj [co ] [AgrSiP proj [AgrSio ontj-ilsk] [[AgrSiiP tk 
[AgrSiio tjl Iwp'ti [vo tj ecrit des romans de science-fiction]]]]] 

144 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

As soon as pro enters the chain, it will share the theta-role of the 
interrogative subject. The result is that it will be a personal pro and 
such elements are known to have referential content. Therefore, in- 
tegration of the pro-element in the A'-chains in (25)-(27) is only al- 
lowed, if the interrogative subject has referential properties. This 
very fact explains why complex inversion is possible in (13) but not 
in (28): 

(28) a *Qui est-il venu? 

who is he (cl) come? 
b *Lequel est-il le plus interessant? 

which one is it (cl) the most interesting 

In (13), the interrogative subjects are specific or, in Pesetsky's 1987 
terms, D-linked, whereas in (28) the subjects do not express any ref- 
erential value and, as a consequence, they are incompatible with pro. 

There is evidence from other languages confirming the hypothe- 
sis that specificity is a prerequisite for doubling of constituents hav- 
ing the status of an operator by an empty or, if possible, by a 
lexically realized element (a resumptive pronoun). 

Cinque 1990 shows that not all types of operators are able to li- 
cense a pro. This is shown by constructions containing parasitic gaps 
which Cinque analyzes as A'-bound pro-elements: 

(29) ?Quali libri hai preso t senza pagare el 
which books have you taken without paying? 

(30) a *Qualcosa ho fatto t anch'io pur senza finire e. 

something I did too even without finishing 
b *Qualcuno forse licenzieranno t dopo aver assunto e. 

someone perhaps they will fire after having employed 

On the basis of the contrast between (29) and (30), he reaches the 
conclusion I derived from the contrast between (13) and (28). 
namely that an A'-bound pro can only be licensed, if the binder is D- 
linked (Cinque 1990:118). 

Zwart 1993 observes that in Dutch topicalized quantifiers can 
only be doubled by the so-called D-word die, if they are specific. It 
explains the difference between (31) and (32), on the one hand, 
where the topicalized quantifiers are clearly non-specific, and (33) 
through (35), on the other, which contain D-linked quantifiers: 

Dutch (Zwart (1993:259,261)) 

(31) *Iedereen die ken ik. 
Everyone that I knew. 
"Everyone, 1 know" 

(32) *Iedereen die is sterfelijk. 
everyone that is mortal 

"Everyone (all human beings) is mortal" 

de Wind: Checking Intenogative Subject Pronouns in French 145 

(33) Alle sprekers die ken ik. 
All speakers that knew I 
"I knew all speakers" 

(34) ledereen in de tuin die kende ik. 
everyone in the garden knew 1 
"I knew everyone in the garden" 

(3 5) ledereen die was er. 

everyone that was there 

"Everyone (who was supposed to be there) was present" 

In Modern Greek, lexically selected WH-words can, under nor- 
mal circumstances, only occur with postverbal subjects. Generation of 
the subject in preverbal position leads to ungrammaticality: 

Modern Greek (Anagnostopoiilou (J 993:2)) 

(36) a *Pjon o Petros idhe? 

whom(Acc) the Peter (Nom) saw-3sg? 
b Pjon idhe o Petros? 

whom (ace) saw-3sg the Peter (Nom) 
"who did Peter see?" 

Anagnostopoulou 1993 attributes the ungrammaticality of sentences 
like (36a) to the fact that preverbal subject being a topic constitutes 
a barrier to WH-movement. However, in some cases WH-arguments 
that clearly must bind a position in the VP can occur with a prever- 
bal subject. If it is true that preverbal subjects constitute a barrier 
for WH-movement, the grammaticality of such cases can only be ex- 
plained under the assumption that the WH-constituent has been 
base-generated in SPEC-CP. From this position it necessarily A'-binds 
a pro. If it is true that only D-linked operators are able to A'-bind a 
pro, it is expected that the occurrence with preverbal subjects is 
restricted to these types of operators. This expectation is fulfilled: 

Anagnostopoulou ( 1993:3,1 1 ) 

(37) **Pjon sto diavolo i dhaskala malose 
Whom to-the devil the teacher scolded? 
'Who the hell did the teacher scold?' 

(38) Pjo provlimaj o Petros elise tj monos tu? 

Which problem] (ace) the Peter (Nom) solved-3sg Cj on his 

Non-specific WH-elements appear not to be able to A'-bind a small 
pro. It explains why (37) containing p. WH-object, that is clearly non- 
specific, is ungrammatical, whereas (38) where the subject is specific 
and can therefore A'-bind a small pro is grammatical. 

In this section, I have shown that the contrast between (13) and 
(28) can be explained through the assumption that in the former but 
not in the latter the subject is able to check its Case-feature through 

146 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

a pro in SPEC-AgrSIP, formally licensed and identified by the subject 
clitic. The impossibility of connecting the subject in (28) to the pro in 
SPEC-AgrSIP is due to the requirement that the binder of the /?ro-el- 
ement must have referential properties. In (13) where the subject is 
specific or, in Pesetsky's 1987 terms, D-linked, this requirement is 
met, but not in (28). Hence their difference in grammaticality. As 
shown by evidence from Italian, Dutch and Modern Greek, reported 
by Cinque 1990, Zwart 1993 and Anagnostopoulou 1993, respec- 
tively, the requirement on operators imposed by A'-bound pro's 
seems to hold cross-linguistically. 

We will conclude the account of checking-mechanisms related to 
interrogative subjects in French with the analysis of the correct 
counterparts of (28). This analysis is presented in the next section. 

5 Checking interrogative subjects in constructions lacking 
the structure of complex inversion 

Whereas only D-linked interrogative subjects are allowed to ap- 
pear in complex inversion, no such restrictions apply to interrogative 
subjects in 'regular' WH-constructions illustrated below: 

(39) a Qui est venu? 

Who is come? 
b Lequel est le plus interessant? 

Which one is the most interesting? 

(40) a Combien de linguistes jouent aux echecs? 

how many linguists play chess? 
b Qui d'entre vous joue aux echecs? 

who among you plays chess? 

The constraint defined in (11) that each functional head can only li- 
cense one specifier overtly and one specifier covertly might lead to 
the conclusion that the subjects in (39) and (40) check their Case- 
feature, that I assume to be invariably strong, in overt syntax and 
their WH-feature in covert syntax. This option is not unattractive 
given the fact, already noted in the previous section, that WH-in-situ 
is wide-spread in French (cf. (14) and (15)). However, we showed 
that in French a trace in SPEC-AgrSP is impossible, because an empty 
CO nor a C^ containing AgrS can be a proper head-governor (see sec- 
tion (3.1) and (4) for discussion). Under the assumption that the ECP 
also holds at LF, the derivation, where the subject checks its Case 
overtly in SPEC-AgrSP and its WH-feature covertly in SPEC-CP, leads 
to ungrammaticality, since LF-raising to SPEC-CP of the subject cre- 
ates a trace in SPEC-AgrSP that fails to be properly head-governed. 

How can nominative Case-checking be realized in (39) and (40), 
if it is excluded in SPEC-AgrSP? I assume that the subjects in (39) 
and (40) check their Case in the same way as subjects in stylistic in- 



de Wind: Checking Interrogative Subject Pronouns in French 147 

version. In French stylistic inversion, the subject, which is always 
lexical, occurs in sentence-final position: 

(41) Quand a telephone Marie? 
when is left Marie? 

(42) Qu'a fait Jean? 
what has done Jean? 

Given the fact that postverbal subjects in French are only allowed in 
a restricted set of constructions, it is hardly plausible that the Case- 
feature of the subject, which is strong otherwise, is suddenly weak in 
stylistic inversion (unless we allow for the possibility that syntactic 
processes influence a strong feature in such a way that it turns into a 
weak feature. This interesting possibility should be looked into, since 
it preserves the insight that all checking-processes take place in the 
functional domain). Instead, I assume that in French subjects can 
check their Case-feature in SPEC-VP. This checking operation can be 
viewed as an alternative to checking in SPEC-AgrSP. It is used, 
whenever SPEC-AgrSP is unavailable. In stylistic inversion the un- 
availability of SPEC-AgrSP is due to principle (11). Because of this 
principle, AgrS can only license one specifier overtly. As it already li- 
censes the WH-feature, overt Case-checking is excluded. The effect is 
that the Case-feature percolates down to the position of V, where it is 
checked against the Case-feature of the subject in SPEC-VP. 

In (39) and (40), the Case-feature of the subject is checked in 
exactly the same way: Overt checking in SPEC-AgrSP is not allowed, 
because AgrS already checks the WH-feature. As a consequence, the 
Case-feature percolates down to V, where it is checked against the 
Case-feature of the subject in SPEC-VP. The result is a representation 
where an A'-chain is formed between the subject and its base-posi- 
tion in SPEC-VP. Some plausibility for this representation can be de- 
rived from A'-chain formation in the Northern Italian dialects 
Fiorentino and Trentino. 

Most, if not all of the Northern Italian dialects are known to have 
subject clitics that require strictly local agreement (cf. Hulk 1986, 
Brandi & Cordin 1989, De Wind 1993) i.e. the subject clitics only 
show agreement, when the subject appears in their local domain. 
This property explains why in the examples from Fiorentino and 
Trentino, illustrated below, subject clitics only show personal agree- 
ment in sentences with a prcverbal subject. In the case of postverbal 
subjects, personal agreement leads to ungrammaticality: 

Fiorentino (Brandi & Cordin 1989:113) 

(43) a Mario e parla. 

Mario he speaks 

148 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

b Trentino 

El Mario el parla 
the Mario he speaks 
Brandi & Cordin (1989:122) 

(44) a *Le hanno telefonato delle ragazze.(F) 
b *L'ha telefona qualche putela. (T) 

they have telephoned some girls 
"Some girls telephoned" 

A sentence with a subject in sentence-final position can be grammat- 
ical only, if the subject clitic is an impersonal one, or simply absent: 

(45) a Gl'ha telefonato delle ragazze (F) 
b Ha telefona qualche putela (T) 

(it) has telephoned some girls 
"Some girls telephoned" 

Sentences with an interrogative subject display the same behaviour 
with respect to personal agreement as those with a postverbal 
subject, as (46) and (47) show: 

Brandi & Cordin (1989:124,125) 

(46) a Quante ragazze gli ha parlato con te? (F) 
b Quante putele ha parla con ti? (T) 

How many girls (it) has spoken to you? 

(47) a *Quante ragazze le hanno parlato con te? (F) 
b *Quante putele le ha parla con ti? (T) 

How many girls they have spoken to you? 

The absence of personal agreement shows that interrogative subjects 
cannot have been moved through SPEC-AgrSP. Therefore, the inter- 
rogative subject must bind a variable elsewhere. The most eligible 
candidate is SPEC-VP, its base-position. 

The evidence from Fiorentino and Trentino showing that A'- 
chains formed between the interrogative subject and the SPEC-VP 
seem to exist lends support to the claim that in French interrogative 
subjects in constructions lacking the structure of complex inversion 
bind a variable in SPEC-VP. 

6 Conclusion 

The derivation of French complex inversion in a structure 
where AgrS moves to C^ can never lead to a licit representation, be- 
cause, as a result of this movement, C^ cannot serve as a proper 
head-governor for any trace in SPEC-AgrSP. Since a trace in SPEC- 
AgrSP is inevitable, due to the obligatory incorporation of the subject 
clitic, AgrS-to-C^ will always lead to an ECP-violation. A licit repre- 
sentation can be obtained under the assumption that the verb only 
moves as far as AgrS" and that the WH-element and the preverbal 

de Wind: Checking Interrogative Subject Pronouns in French 149 

subject are moved to separate projections, SPEC-CP and SPEC-AgrSP 
respectively. The result is a structure consistent with Kayne's 1993 
requirement that each head can have only one specifier. In such a 
structure, the subject clitic supports overt checking of the WH- and 
nominative Case-feature by AgrS which contains the WH-feature and 
the nominative Case-feature carried along by the verb from T^, their 
base-position (cf. Rizzi 1991, Chomsky 1992). Under the assumption 
that AgrS can license only one specifier, overt checking of both the 
WH-element and the lexical subject by AgrS is impossible. Therefore, 
a subject clitic is introduced: while AgrS checks the WH-operator, the 
subject clitic inherits the nominative Case-feature from AgrS and 
checks its against the lexical subject. 

Under this approach, the presence of the subject clitic can be 
viewed as a diagnostic for nominative Case- and WH-checking in 
overt syntax. This observation is relevant for the analysis of cases of 
complex inversion involving an interrogative subject. As the WH- 
and the Case-feature are both carried by one specifier it is not im- 
mediately clear, whether they both undergo overt checking. The 
presence of the subject clitic, however, suggests that this is indeed 
the case. 

The nominative Case- and WH-feature of interrogative subjects 
in French complex inversion can not be checked in the way in which 
they are checked in English, i.e. through movement of the subject to 
the SPEC-AgrSP and subsequent raising to SPEC-CP, where C^ is 
turned into a proper head-governor under agreement, because an 
empty C^ in French cannot turn into a proper head-governor as 
shown by the (^Me/^MZ-alternation. Checking of these features is real- 
ized by moving the interrogative subject to SPEC-CP where it checks 
its WH-feature, non-locally, against AgrSI and its Case-feature 
against the subject clitic by A'-binding a pro in SPEC-AgrSIP formally 
licensed and identified by this clitic. 

Pro only allows for binding by a specific or D-linked operator. 
This restriction explains the ungrammaticality of the examples in (2) 
where the operator is non-specific versus the grammaticality of 
those in (4) containing a specific operator. As shown by e.g. Cinque 
1990, Zwart 1993 and Anagnostopoulou 1993 the restriction imposed 
by an A'-bound pro on its antecedent seems to hold cross- 

Interrogative subjects in sentences lacking the structure of 
complex inversion check their Case in SPEC-VP just like poslverbal 
subjects in French stylistic inversion do. Some plausibility for this 
checking-mechanism is derived from the Northern Italian dialects 
Trentino and Fiorentino, which clearly show that Case-checking in 
SPEC-VP is the only alternative for interrogative subjects. 

150 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

In short, interrogative subjects in French check their Case either 
in SPEC-VP or via a pro in SPEC-AgrSP. The first way of Case-check- 
ing is accessible to all types interrogative subjects. The second 
possibility is only available to D-linked interrogative subjects. 


' This paper is based on research made possible by a grant of 
The Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research, which is hereby 
gratefully acknowledged. I owe much gratitude to Lorie Heggie, 
Aafke Hulk, Richard Kayne, Jan Koster, Elabbas Benmamoun, 
Allessandro Zucchi and Jan Wouter Zwart for comments and 
suggestions. All errors are mine. 

2 In Rizzi & Roberts' 1989 analysis, the function of the subject 
clitic is not taken into consideration. Roberts 1993 elaborating on this 
model tries to account for the presence of this element. 

3 The agreement-relation between the subject clitic and AgrS is 
clearly shown by the following example from Kayne 1984: 

(i) Quand Jean et moi devrait-on partir tout de suite, 
when Jean and me should we leave immediately? 

In (i), the verb agrees with the subject clitic and not with the lexical 
subject. Given this fact, it is hard to defend base-generation of the 
clitic in SPEC-TP. 

■* I assume that the subject clitic adjoins to the right of the verb in 
AgrSI. In Kayne 1993, clitics invariably adjoin to the left and, 
furthermore, adjunction to verbs is excluded by the condition on 
asymmetric C-command. Due to space-limitations, I am not able to 
discuss this problem. 

5 Since Sportiche 1988, when it became widely accepted that 
subjects are base-genareted in SPEC-VP, the notion WH-in-situ is a 
misnomer as far as interrogative subjects are concerned. Contrary to 
the WH-elements in (14) and (15), the interrogative subject has 
undergone movement to SPEC-AgrSP. Still, I will continue to refer to 
such cases as WH-in-situ. It does not mean freezing of a constituent 
in its base-position, but rather that no movement to CP takes place. 


AnagNOSTOPOLOU, E. 1993. Discourse Linking and subjects in Modern 
Greek. Linguistics in the Netherlands, ed by F. Drijkoningen & K 
Hengeveld, 1-12. Amsterdam: John Benjamin Publishing 

de Wind: Checking Interrogative Subject Pronouns in French 151 

BranDI, L. & P. Cordin. 1989. Two Italian dialects and the null subject 

parameter. The null subject parameter, ed by O. Jaeggli & K.J. 

Safir, 11-142. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Publishers. 
Chomsky, N. 1981. Lectures on Government and Binding. Utrecht: 

. 1992. A minimalist program for linguistic theory. MIT occa- 
sional papers in Linguistics 1. 
Cinque, G. 1990. Types of A'-dependencies. Cambridge: MIT Press. 
DrijkoNINGEN, F. 1990. Functional heads and the unification of French 

word order. Probus 2:3.291 - 320. 
FrieDEMANN, M. a. 1990. 'Le pronom interrogatif que et la montee du 

verbe en C^. Rivista di Grammatica Generativa 15:123-139. 
Hulk, A. C. J. 1986. Subject clitics and the pro-drop parameter. 

Formal parameters of generative grammar. Going Romance II, ed 

by P. Coopmans, Y. Bordelois and B. Dotson-Smith, 107-119. 

. 1992. Residual V2 and the licensing of functional projections. 

Ms. University of Amsterdam. 
Kayne, R. S. 1984. Chains, categories external to S and French complex 

inversion. Natural Language And Linguistic Theory. 107-139. 
. 1993. The Antisymmetry of Syntax. Ms. New York: Graduate 

Center, CUNY. 
OBENAUER, H. G. 1985. On the identification of empty categories. The 

Linguistic Review 4:153-202. 

1992. L'interpretation des structures WH et I'accord du 

participe passe. Structure de Phrase et theorie du liage, ed by 

H.G. Obenauer and A. Zribi-Hertz, 169-193. Paris: P.V.V. 
Pesetsky, D. 1987. w/i-in-situ: movement and unselective binding. 

The representation of (in)definiteness, ed by E. Reuland and A. 

ter Meulen, 98-129. Cambridge: MIT Press. 
RlZZI, L. 1986. Null subjects in Italian and the theory of pro. 

Linguistic Inquiry 17:501-557. 

. 1989. Relativized minimality. Cambridge: MIT Press. 

. 1991. Residual verb second and the Wh-criterion. Technical 

Reports in formal and computational Linguistics 2:23-50. 

University of Geneva. 
& I Roberts. 1989. Complex inversion in French. Probus 1:1.1- 

Roberts, l. 1992. The nature of subject clitics in Franco-Provencal 

Valdotain. Clitics and their hosts, ed by Henk van Riemsdijk & 

Luigi Rizzi, 303-330. 
. 1993. Verbs and diachronic syntax, a comparative history of 

English and French. London: Norwell, Kluwer. 
SPORTICHE, D. 1988. A theory of floating quantfiers and its corollaries 

for constituent structure. Linguistic Inquiry 19:425-449. 

152 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:2 (Fall 1 994) 

Wind DE, J. M. 1993. Three types of subject clitic in French: the tran- 
sitional stage of preverbal French subject clitics. Ms. University 
of Groningen. 

. 1994. Against V-to-C in French complex inversion. Issues and 

theory in Romance linguistics, ed by M.L. Mazzola. Washington 
Georgetown University Press. 

ZWART, C. J. W. 1993. Dutch Syntax, a minimalist approach. Ph. 



Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Alexis Dimitriadis 
University of Pennsylvania 

Null object constructions in many languages have been 
analyzed as involving movement of a null topic operator. 
This paper examines Greek, Bulgarian, Quiteiio Spanish and 
Brazilian Portuguese, in which definite or indefinite object 
drop fails to show evidence of such movement. All four lan- 
guages show gaps in their clitic pronoun paradigm and a 
certain "exceptional" form of clitic left dislocation corre- 
sponding to the type of objects, definite or indefinite, that 
may be dropped. I argue that these languages show evi- 
dence of having phonetically null "clitic-like" pronominals, 
which make possible a unified, maximally simple account of 
the phenomena examined here. 

1. Introduction 

Since Huang's (1984) analysis of null objects in Chinese, null object 
constructions in many languages have been analyzed as operator- 
variable constructions, in which a null topic operator raises to verb- 
complement position, leaving behind a trace that serves as the vari- 
able it binds. Raposo (1986) adopts Huang's analysis for European 
Portuguese, also an object-drop language, and Campos (1986) pro- 
poses the same analysis for Spanish, in which only indefinite objects 
may be dropped. A major source of support for such analyses is the 
sensitivity of object drop to island effects. 

However, a number of languages exhibit object drop that is in- 
sensitive to island constraints, (cf. Farrell (1990), Kato (1993) for 
Brazilian Portuguese, Suiier & Yepez (1988) for Quiteno Spanish). I 
will show below that indefinite object drop in modern Greek and 
Bulgarian is likewise insensitive to islands. In such cases a topic op- 
erator analysis is unmotivated (and is indeed rejected by the afore- 
mentioned authors). 

In this squib, 1 argue that Greek and Bulgarian show evidence of 
having phonetically null indefinite "special" object pronominals 
(meaning null, clitic-like indefinite pronominals). This claim is moti- 
vated by the similarity of a number of constructions involving indef- 
inites to certain constructions involving cliticized definites. As I will 
show, it provides a maximally simple account of island-insensitive 
indefinite object drop (which under this account is not object drop at 
all, but rather cliticization by a null clitic), and of certain construc- 
tions involving left-adjoined indefinite objects that 1 will refer to as 
"exceptional" clitic-left-dislocation (ECLLD). 1 will show that such an 

154 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994 ) 

analysis is superior to a null topic analysis in the style of Huang 
(1984), or to an analysis stipulating that pro (or an equivalent empty 
category) can be licensed as an indefinite object. 

An equivalent analysis is proposed for Brazilian Portuguese and 
Quiteiio Spanish, which I analyze as having definite null special 
pronominals.i This analysis predicts a number of surprising proper- 
ties of these two languages, although it fails to explain the apparent 
sensitivity of null definite objects to Principle C effects. 

In the next section, I explain the typological assumptions that 
allow me to speak of null "clitic-like" elements. Section 2 is a sum- 
mary of Dimitriadis (1994); it reviews briefly the pattern of ECLLD 
and lOD in Greek, from which it is concluded that ECLLD is demon- 
strably a subclass of CLLD, and that the null variable involved can 
only be a null special pronominal; and likewise that lOD in Greek (but 
not in all lOD languages) behaves as the indefinite counterpart of 
cliticization, rather than as a form of topicalization. 

In section 3 I show that Bulgarian, which has island-insensitive 
lOD like Greek, also exhibits ECLLD, as expected if Bulgarian has null 
indefinite special pronominals. 

The plausibility of this analysis is bolstered by its extension to 
cases of island-insensitive definite object drop, in particular to 
Brazilian Portuguese and Quiteiio Spanish, discussed in the remaining 
sections. Both languages have gaps in their definite clitic paradigms 
that correspond to the types of objects that can be dropped; more- 
over, both languages allow definite objects to enter in ECLLD con- 
structions, just as would be expected of languages with null definite 

Thus we have evidence for the same cluster of properties in all 

(1) a. A language allows a certain class of null objects 
(definite or indefinite) inside islands, rendering a null- 
topic analysis inappropriate. 

b. The language always turns out to lack clitic pronoun 
forms (overt special pronominals) that could be con- 
strued with the class of objects that can be dropped; 
hence there is a gap in the special pronominal 
paradigm, which can be occupied by the posed null cli- 

c. The same class of objects can enter in ECLLD construc- 

The languages that have lOD in islands lack indefinite clitics and 
have ECLLD of indefinites, while the languages that have island-in- 
definite full object drop have lost the relevant definite object clitics 
and allow ECLLD of definite objects. The persistence of this pattern 
irrespective of the definiteness of the allowable null objects supports 
the contention that the phenomena in question are related. 

Diniitriadis: Clitics and island-insensitive object drop 155 

1.1. Special clitics and special pronominals 

Given the inherently phonological nature of clitics, the notion of a 
null counterpart to a clitic pronoun appears to be not only unprinci- 
pled, but a contradiction in terms. In this section I will attempt to 
address these objections and clarify the relation of null clitics to li- 
censing mechanisms and to the empty category paradigm. 

Part of the problem, I believe, is the use of the term "clitic" to 
describe a phonological as well as a syntactic notion. Within the class 
of clitics it is traditional to distinguish the class of "special clitics," 
which are characterized, for example, by appearing in syntactically 
restricted positions, as opposed to "simple" clitics such as the cliti- 
cized pronouns in English, (cf. Wanner (1978)). I assume that (some) 
such clitics comprise a distinct grammatical category, for which 1 
have coined the name "special pronominals." 

Traditional Greek grammar recognizes clitic pronouns as a dis- 
tinct subclass of pronouns; elsewhere they are described as "non- 
tonic object pronouns." I chose the term "special pronominals" as a 
typological generalization of the notion of special clitics, and I use it 
explicitly to refer to the syntactic properties of the class in question 
without reference to its phonological properties. Suppose one were 
studying Greek (or any Romance language) in its written form only, 
without any knowledge of its phonology: there would still be a 
clearly recognizable syntactic class of pronominals that must always 
immediately precede or follow a verb, can (in some languages) enter 
in doubling constructions, etc. It is this class, so construed, that I in- 
tend the term "special pronominals" to describe. 2 This is not a deep 
claim: 1 am merely providing a name for what I consider to be an 
obvious, and long recognized, natural syntactic class, whatever its 
formal status. 

It is true that all known members of this class, however defined, 
are overt, and that they are obligatorily cliticized. But it does not 
follow that these are necessary properties of the class of special 
pronominals. Certainly they would be if the overt identification of a 
grammatical relation is taken to be an essential property of this 
class;-^ but this is a theory-internal matter, not a pretheoretical given, 
certainly not a matter that should be settled by definition. 

For reasons of consistency with established usage, 1 will con- 
tinue to refer to "clitic pronouns", and sometimes even to "null cli- 
tics;" but it should be borne in mind that the null entities 1 propose 
belong to the paradigm of the syntactic class that contains pronomi- 
nal clitics, and need not have all the properties associated with the 
term "clitic." 

156 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

2. Null pronominals in Modern Greek 

2.1. Exceptional CLLD 

Clitic Left Dislocation (CLLD), recently studied by Cinque (1990) and 
latridou (forthcoming), typically involves a left-dislocated element 
coindexed with a clitic, as in the following example from Greek. 

(2) To vivlio i Maria to efere. 
the book/Acc the Maria/Nom CL brought 
'Mary brought the book.' 

Although CLLD superficially resembles the left dislocation of a 
clitic-doubled element, it has been established that it is a distinct 
phenomenon, present in languages that prohibit clitic doubling (such 
as Italian), and appropriate in contexts incompatible with left dislo- 

latridou (forthcoming) argues that the preposed object in (3b) is 
base-generated in that position, and presents several diagnostics that 
differentiate it from ordinary left dislocation (LD) of an object. The 
first diagnostic is that a CLLD'ed object is old information, and need 
not be stressed, while an ordinary left-dislocated object must h e 
stressed. Thus (3b), but not (3c), is an appropriate (unstressed) an- 
swer to (3a). 

(3) a. Pios agorase to palto? 

who bought the coat 

b. To palto o Costas to agorase. (CLLD) 
the coat the Costas CL bought 

'Costas bought the coat.' 

c. # To palto o Costas agorase. (LD) 

the coat the Costas bought 
'Costas bought the coat.' 

By this diagnostic, (4b) must be a CLLD construction, since it is 
an appropriate answer to (4a): Left-adjoined indefinites in Greek can 
be interpreted like CLLD'ed definite NPs. 

(4) a. Pios agorase palto? 

who bought coat 
'Who bought a coat?' 
b. Palto o Costas agorase. (CLLD-like) 

coat the Costas bought 
'Costas bought a coat.' 

We have here a left dislocation construction, in the absence of an 
overt clitic, in which the adjoined nominal element is old information. 
I examined this construction at some length in Dimitriadis (1994), 
concluding on the basis of several tests that it is indeed a form of 
CLLD. I call such "clitic-less nominal CLLD" constructions "exceptional 
CLLD," or ECLLD; when necessary I will refer to CLLD with a visible 
clitic as "overt CLLD." Although the presence of a clitic is not concep- 
tually necessary to a CLLD construction, 4 I argued in Dimitriadis 

Dimitriadis: Clitics and island-insensitive object drop 157 

(1994) that the semantic variable involved in ECLLD has construal 
and distributional properties that are identical to those expected of 
an indefinite clitic pronoun (except for the fact that it lacks phono- 
logical content), and are incompatible with those expected of object 

The null special pronoun analysis, of course, claims that there is 
nothing "exceptional" about ECLLD, aside from involving a non-overt 
special pronominal instead of an overt one (i.e., instead of a clitic 
pronoun). As (3c) indicates, Greek only allows indefinites to appear 
in ECLLD constructions. ^ 

2.2. Object drop as cliticization 

In this section I examine Indefinite Object Drop (lOD) in Greek, which 
as noted is insensitive to islands. For this reason an analysis in the 
style of Huang (1984) must be rejected, while an analysis in terms of 
null special pronominals accounts for lOD by assimilating it to cliti- 

Greek does not in general allow direct objects to be dropped, al- 
though of course they may be omitted if a clitic is present. 

(5) Q Foras to palto sou? 

you-wear the coat your 
'Are you wearing your coat?' 
A: *(To) forao. 
CL I-wear 

However, an indefinite NP may be omitted without a (visible) clitic 
being present. (In fact, a clitic may not in general appear in place of 
an indefinite). 

(6) Q Foras palto? 

you-wear coat 
'Are you wearing a coat?' 
A: (*To) forao. 
CL I-wear 
'I am wearing [one].' 

If the indefinite sentences may contain an invisible counterpart to 
the clitic pronoun, then lOD is simply assimilated to cliticization, re- 
quiring no additional devices. 

Campos (1986) presents five diagnostics demonstrating thai in- 
definite object drop in Spanish obeys the constraints associated with 
movement. It is indicative of the differences in the superficially 
similar object drop paradigms of the two languages that Greek be- 
haves differently from Spanish with respect to all five diagnostics. 
For example the sentences in (7), (8) show that in Greek, but not in 
Spanish, object drop is insensitive to the Sentential Subject 
Constraint, and the Adjunct Island Constraint, respectively. Both are 
otherwise present in both languages. (Spanish examples are from 
Campos (1986)). 

158 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(7) a. Pepe necesita gafas? (Sentential Subject) 

'Does Pepe need glasses?' 
A: * Que necesita es obvio. 

'That he needs (them) is obvious.' 
Q O Costas chriazete gialia? 

the Costas needs glasses 
A: To oti chriazete ine profanes. 

the that he-needs is obvious 

'That he needs (them) is obvious.' 

(8) a. Q Encontraron entradas para la pelicula? (Adjunct) 

'Did you find tickets for the movie?' 
A: * Si, pudimos entrar al cine porque encontramos. 

'Yes, we were able to go into the cinema because 

we found (some).' 
b. Q Vrikate isitiria gia tin tenia? 

you-find tickets for the film? 
A: Ne, boresame ke bikame giati vrikame. 

yes, we-could and entered because we-found 

'Yes, we were able to enter because we found (some).' 

On the basis of the sensitivity to islands of Spanish lOD, Campos 
(1986) argues for an analysis involving movement from verb-com- 
plement position of a null topic operator (cf. Huang (1984)). The in- 
sensitivity of Greek lOD to islands establishes that a similar analysis 
of Greek lOD would be inappropriate. The null-clitic analysis, on the 
other hand, naturally predicts that lOD would be insensitive to syn- 
tactic islands. 

There is another benefit to this approach: It is not clear, under 
Campos's system, why Spanish only allows indefinite objects to be 
dropped; the restriction of the null topic operator to such objects 
must be stated independently. Since indefinite "clitics" are by their 
nature restricted to non-specific objects, an analysis along the lines I 
propose is automatically inapplicable to definite objects. Moreover, 
we would expect that the objects that can be dropped are exactly 
those that cannot be cliticized by an overt clitic. As the following 
section establishes, this indeed appears to be the case in Greek. 

2.3. The distribution of ECLLD and lOD 

A prediction of the claim that null special pronominals are involved 
in lOD and ECLLD is that the distribution of the two constructions will 
be consistent, i.e., that all and only the objects that can object-drop 
should appear in ECLLD constructions. This is not logically necessary: 
CLLD has special properties that distinguish it from ordinary cliti- 
cization or clitic doubling. For example, Italian does not allow ordi- 
nary clitic doubling, but allows CLLD. 

In Greek, nevertheless, the choice between the definite (overt) 
and indefinite (null) variant appears to be made on the basis of the 
same criteria for CLLD and ordinary cliticization. Those objects that 

Dimitriadis: Clitics and island-insensitive object drop 159 

can be dropped cannot be cliticized, and vice versa; and those objects 
that can undergo ECLLD cannot undergo overt CLLD. and vice versa. 
In fact one property determines the other, i.e., the objects that un- 
dergo lOD also undergo ECLLD, while those that can (and must) be 
cliticized must also be construed with an overt clitic in CLLD con- 

This pattern is examined in some detail in Dimitriadis (1994). 
The following, which will serve to illustrate the general pattern, 
demonstrates that this complementarity of distribution extends to 
non-nominal complements. 

(9) Q (To) kseris oti/pos ta skilia trone tiri? (overt clitic) 

CL you-know that the dogs eat cheese 
'Do you know that dogs eat cheese?' 

a. *(To) ksero. (* IOC) 
QL I-know 

b. Oti ta skilia trone tiri *(to) ksero. (* ECLLD) 
that the dogs eat cheese CL I-know 

'I know that dogs eat cheese.' 

(10) Q. (*To) Ipes efcharisto? (* overt clitic) 

CL you-said thanks 
'Did you say thanks?' 

a. (*To) ipa. 
CL I-said 
'I said it.' 

b. Efcharisto (*to) ipa. (ECLLD) 
thanks CL I-said 

3. lOD in Bulgarian 

The languages of the Balkans are known to share many a subtle 
quirk of grammar. As mentioned above, Bulgarian has indefinite ob- 
ject drop and ECLLD which appear to be fully assimilable to the ac- 
count given for Greek. 

Consider first object drop. As in Greek, only indefinite objects 
can be dropped (examples (11,12)), and it is possible to do so inside 
islands (examples (13,14)). 

( 1 1 ) Q Nosis li palto? 

you-wear Q coat 
'Are you wearing a coat?' 

a. Nosja. 

b. * Nosja go. 
I-wear CL 

160 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

(12) Nosis li si paltoto? 

you-wear Q refl. the-coat 
'Are you wearing your coat?' 

a. * Nosja. 

b. Nosja go. 
I-wear CL 

(13) Q Koj donese bira na kupona? 

who brought beer at the-party 
'Who brought beer to the party?' 
A: tux ce covekat kojto e donesal si e tragnal. 

I-heard that the-person who is brought refl. is left 
'1 heard that the person who brought <s? has left.' 

(14) Q Paulina ste donese li bira na kupona? 

Paulina will bring Q beer to the-party 
'Will Paulina bring beer to the party?' 
A: tux sluxa ce ste donese. 

heard the-rumour that will bring 
'I heard the rumor that she will bring 0.' 

If we conclude, as I propose, that Bulgarian has null indefinite 
clitics (that is, null indefinite special pronominals), we expect that 
they should be utilized in CLLD, i.e., that Bulgarian also should have 
ECLLD of indefinites. Although this is in fact the case, the situation is 
obscured by an independent phenomenon (one not shared with 
Greek), the ability of Bulgarian to have unstressed topics that are old 
information (cf. Rudin (1986), Izvorski (1994)). Thus superficially, it 
appears as if Bulgarian has ECLLD of definites and indefinites alike:^ 

(15) Q Are you wearing a coat? 

a. Palto nosja prez zimata. 
coat I-wear during the-winter 

b. * Palto go nosja (prez zimata). 
coat CL I-wear during the-winter 

(16) Are you wearing your coat? 

a. Paltoto si go nosja. 
the-coat refl. CL I-wear 
'I am wearing my coat.' 

b. Paltoto si nosja prez zimata. 
the-coat refl. I-wear during the-winter 
'I wear my coat during the winter.' 

It would in fact be more parsimonious to conclude that Bulgarian has 
no ECLLD at all, since sentences (16a) and (15a) can be generated by 
topicalization; let's for now refer to these constructions as "apparent 
ECLLD," pending resolution of their true status. 

Fortunately, topicalization is sensitive to syntactic islands, while 
CLLD, not being derived via movement, is not. Thus when an island 
intervenes, we expect it to interfere with topicalization only, allowing 


Dimitriadis: Clitics and island-insensitive object drop 161 

CLLD (overt or "exceptional"). As the following sentences show, def- 
inites cannot be topicalized across an island, although as expected 
they can undergo overt CLLD in such environments. But indefinites 
can be left-adjoined in the absence of a clitic; since sentence (18) 
cannot be derived by topicalization, it must be analyzed as ECLLD; 
moreover, since (17a) is ungrammatical we conclude that ECLLD is 
restricted to indefinites, as predicted by the null clitic analysis. 

(17) Who brought the computer to the party? 

a. * Kompjutara cux ce covekat kojto e donesal 
the-computer I-heard that the-person who is brought 
si e tragnal. 

refl. is left 

'I heard that the person who brought the computer has left.' 

b. Kompjutara cux ce covekat kojto go e 
the-computer I-heard that the-person who CL is 
donesal si e tragnal. 

brought refl. is left 

"I heard that the person who brought the computer has left.' 

(18) Who brought beer to the party? 

A: Bira, cux ce covekat kojto e donesal si e 

beer I-heard that the-person who is brought refl. is 
'I heard that the person who brought beer has left.' 

Thus we have found in Bulgarian the cluster of properties ex- 
pected of (indefinite) null special pronominals: indefinite object drop 
inside islands, ECLLD of indefinites, and the incompatibility of the 
overt (definite) clitic forms with the NPs that undergo lOD and 
ECLLD. In the next two sections I examine two languages that allow 
null definite objects inside islands. The null clitic analysis would 
predict that definites. in these languages, should show the cluster of 
effects associated with indefinites in Greek and Bulgarian. As the 
following sections will show, this indeed appears to be the case. 

4. Quiteno Spanish 

Quiteiio Spanish, a dialect spoken in Quito, Ecuador, was studied by 
Suner & Yepez (1988). All examples provided below are theirs. 
Quitefio is of interest because it allows definite object drop inside is- 

(19) a. Yo le reconocf al honibre que trajo 0. 

1 him recognized the man who brought 
'I recognized the man who brought it [the package].' 
b. La persona que mando escribio esta nota. 
the person who sent wrote this note 

'The person who sent them |the llowersj wrote this note.' 

162 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

c. Cuando entregue ((), puede matricularse. 

when you-hand in you-can register 
'When you hand them [the documents] in, you can register.' 

Thus the null element denoted by (j) cannot be a null topic operator as 
in Huang (1984). Could it be a form of null "clitic," in this case defi- 
nite? There are two observations that lend plausibility to such an . 
analysis. The first is that the definite direct clitics {lo(s), la(s) ) have ( 
been almost completely lost; the indirect object clitic le(s) can be ^ 
used in their place. But in sentences that also contain a cliticized indi- I 
rect object, the direct object cannot be overtly represented by a clitic; 
ellipsis is nevertheless allowed (provided the object is inanimate), 
with a null where standard Spanish would use a direct object clitic: 

(20) a. Damelo. (Standard Spanish) 

'Give it to me.' 
b. Dame(t). (Quiteno) 

(21) a. Bueno, yo te lo saco. (Standard Spanish) 

well I from-you it remove 
'Well, I'll remove it from you.' 
(lo = el vestido 'the dress') 
b. Bueno, yo te (}) saco. (Quiteiio) 

Thus Quiteiio has a gap in its clitic paradigm that can be "filled" by 
positing null definite accusative clitics; this is also motivated by the 
clear correspondence of the above sentences to cliticization in 
Standard Spanish. 

Given such an analysis, we might also hope to see ECLLD of def- 
inite objects. Suner & Yepez report that null object constructions are 
"favored by the existence of the referent of the (]) DO either in Left- 
Dislocated position or in the immediately preceding sentence," noting 
that "these Left-Dislocated phrases are not in any way contrastive or 
emphatic." The relevant examples can be recognized as clear cases of 
ECLLD of definites: 

(22) a. Las elecciones yo nunca entendi ^. 

the elections I never understood 

'The elections, I have never understood them.' 

b. La leche vendian <}) a $1.20. 

the milk they-sold for $1.20 - 

'The milk, they used to sell it for $1.20.' | 

c. Las de alia, cerraron if. ^ 
the ones from there they-closed 

'The ones from there, they closed them.' 

Thus in Quiteiio, we see associated with definite objects the 
same cluster of properties that we found in the indefinites of Greek 
and Bulgarian. The recurrence, mutatis mutandis, of these phenom- 
ena in connection with definite objects is strong evidence that ECLLD 
and island-insensitive object drop are related. It does not, to be sure. 

Dimitriadis: Clitics and island-insensitive object drop 163 

show that null "clitics" are necessarily responsible: if Quiteno has a 
different way to license a null object that does not involve move- 
ment, it is plausible that the null entity involved can also function as 
a CLLD variable. The gap in the clitic paradigm, which as we will see 
in the next section is repeated in Brazilian Portuguese, provides more 
specific, if weaker, evidence for the null-clitic analysis. 

Against this evidence we must balance a serious complication 
that I have not yet addressed: it appears that the null entity is sub- 
ject to Principle C of the binding theory, a property that distinguishes 
it from overt clitic pronouns. 

(23) Mi carroj necesita que \ei/*(\)\ lave, 
my car needs that CL I-wash 
'My car needs that I wash it.' 

On the basis of such data Suner & Yepez (1988) rule out pro as well 
as "null resumptive pronouns" as the empty element in question. One 
possible approach is to concede that the null clitics of Quiteiio are not 
functionally identical to the overt clitics of Standard Spanish, possi- 
bly being subject to Principle C. This raises the issue of the binding 
principle that governs the null clitics of Greek and Bulgarian. Note 
that a clitic, overt or null, might be subject to different binding con- 
ditions when used as a variable (in CLLD) rather than as a pronoun. 

Another possibility is to attribute the ungrammaticality of (23) 
to independent principles governing the choice between le and <^ as 
the direct object clitic; it is conceivable that these principles force the 
overt variant to be used when it is c-commanded by a coindexed 
antecedent. Apparent principle C effects also arise in connection with 
object drop in Brazilian Portuguese, discussed in the next section. 
Farrell (1990) argues that these are in fact an artifact of an indepen- 
dent restriction on anaphora; if his analysis is correct, it may also be 
relevant to the Quiteiio data. 

5. Brazilian Portuguese 

Brazilian Portuguese is another language with island-insensitive 
definite object drop, which has been studied among others by Tarallo 
(1983), Kato (1993) and Farrell (1990). Object drop is most accept- 
able with inanimate third-person objects, while overt forms are 
"generally preferred and often required" for animate third person 
objects. First and second objects must be overt, as example (24a) 
shows; third-person null objects are possible inside islands, as in 
(24b) (both examples from Farrell (1990)). 

(24) a. Coitado do Joao/ *de mim/ *de voce. O chefe 

poor of the Joao of me of you the boss 

mandou embora. 

sent away 

'Poor Joaoj/mcj/youi. The boss fired 01.' 

164 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

b. Eu vou beber a cerveja antes de brigar com 
I go drink the beer before of fight with 
a pessoa que deixou (j) forada geladeira. 
the person that left out of the refrigerator 

'I'm going to drink the beeri before fighting with the person 
that left <^\ out of the refrigerator.' 

Again, we find that the clitic paradigm of Brazilian Portuguese 
contains a gap corresponding to the null elements posited by the nu 
special pronominals analysis. Spoken Brazilian Portuguese has lost 
third person accusative clitics; with inanimate objects, even full pro- 
nouns are marginal. 

Like Quiteno, Brazilian Portuguese has ECLLD of definites (Nunes, 
p.c). Example (25a), from Kato (1993), involves a left-adjoined an- 
tecedent that is old information. Example (25b), from Farrell (1990), 
shows ECLLD in an embedded clause. (Neither author identifies these 
examples as analogues of CLLD). 

(25) a. Q E quanto ao bolo? 

and as for the cake 
'What about the cake?' 
A: (O bolo,) o rapaz que (\) trouxe saiu agora, 
the cake the boy who bought just left 
'The cakei, the boy who bought <l)i just left.' 
b. Ouvi falar que o bolo todo o mundo adorou. 

I-heard say that the cake everybody adored 

'I heard that everybody loved the cake.' 

As Farrell notes, (25b) is not readily analyzed as topicalization, par- 
ticularly since the left-adjoined NP here follows the complementizer; 
but it is perfectly regular as an instance of CLLD. Compare the follow- 
ing Greek examples:^ 

(26) a. O Yanis nomize oti tin Maria o Kostas 

the Yanis thought that the Mary/Acc the Kostas 
tin ide. (CLLD) 

QL saw 

'Yanis thought that Kostas saw Maria.' 

b. O Yanis nomize oti kerasia o Kostas efage. 

the Yanis thought that cherries/Acc the Kostas ate 
'Yanis thought that Kostas ate cherries.' (ECLLD) 

Object drop in Brazilian Portuguese appears to be constrained by 
Binding Condition C: a null object contained in a complement clause 
cannot be coindexed with a matrix argument. 

(27) *0 Joaoj falou que o Pedro viu ^i. 

Joao said that Pedro saw 
'Joaoj said that Pedro saw (\)\ ' 

Farrell (1990) argues that such apparent principle C violations are in 
fact caused by an independently attested restriction that prohibits an 
empty object from being coindexed, intra- or inter-sententially, with 

Dimitriadis: Clitics and island-insensitive object drop 165 

the subject of a verb that takes a sentential complement. He con- 
cludes from this that empty objects in Brazilian Portuguese belong to 
the category pro, but his argument serves just as well in support of 
null third person clitics. 

Farrell proposes a licensing mechanism under which object pro 
is exceptionally identified by the verb as long as pro carries "intrin- 
sic" third-person features. The motivation for this mechanism ap- 
pears to be restricted to the theory-internal need to somehow iden- 
tify object pro, plus the observation that only third-person objects 
may be dropped. Assuming Farrell's reanalysis of the binding facts is 
correct, an analysis positing a null third person form for the definite 
clitic (that is, special pronominal) is better motivated than his 
intrinsic specification account. 

The historical change that Brazilian Portuguese has undergone 
can then be said to involve, rather than the complete loss of third 
person accusative clitics, the replacement of overt forms with 
phonologically null substitutes. Null clitic constructions appear to be 
supplementing, and perhaps replacing, the preexisting topic-operator 
mechanism of object drop that European Portuguese still has. Bianchi 
& Figueiredo Silva (1993) found that Brazilian Portuguese has sepa- 
rate animate and inanimate paradigms of object drop; the animate 
paradigm obeys islands like OD in European Portuguese, while the 
inanimate paradigm is insensitive to islands. That would make a null 
clitics analysis appropriate to the inanimate paradigm only. 

Kato (1993) has previously (and independently) analyzed object 
drop in Brazilian Portuguese by means of a null third person ac- 
cusative clitic; the proposals made here are fully compatible with her 
analysis. Kato accepts the presence of Principle C effects on object 
drop; she accommodates these effects as follows: to the classification 
of Sportiche (1986), which divides elements that enter into binding 
relations according to whether c-command is required or optional 
(and whether a locality or an antilocality condition is in effect), she 
adds a third column specifying that "anti-c-command" is required, 
and assigns null clitics to it. Although this step accommodates the 
behavior of Brazilian object drop, it is clear that it does so by in ef- 
fect stipulating that null clitics are subject to Binding Condition C; 
thus the question still awaits a more illuminating explanation. 

The presence of Principle C effects with null, but not with overt, 
definite special pronominals raises a conceptual problem: contrary to 
the simplest hypothesis about special pronominals, it implies that 
they differ from overt clitics in more than phonological content. A 
possible explanation of the origin of such differences (although not of 
the Principle C effects themselves) is suggested by the work of Nunes 
(1992). He notes that in written Brazilian Portuguese, which still has 
third-person accusative clitics, the distribution of such clitics is dif- 
ferent from the distribution of dative and first and second person ac- 
cusative clitics: for example, with auxiliary + participial main verb 

166 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

constructions, third person accusative clitics must appear before the 
auxiliary, while other clitics favor proclisis to the participle. 

(28) a. Joao tinha Ihe-dado urn livro. 

Joao had to-him given a book 
b. ??Joao Ihe-tinha dado urn livro. 

(29) a. * Joao tinha o-visto. 

Joao had him seen 
b. Joao o-tinha visto. 

In constructions of the form auxiliary + infinitival verb, third person 
accusative clitics favor enclisis to the infinitive, while other clitics fa- 
vor proclisis to it. Nunes argues that as a result of a historical change 
from enclisis in Old Portuguese to the strongly proclitic modern 
Brazilian Portuguese system, the phonological licensing of the sylla- 
ble onset of third-person accusative clitics became impossible; this 
led to reanalysis giving rise, among other things, to the null object 
construction of Brazilian Portuguese. 

Although Nunes is agnostic about the proper analysis of the null 
object construction, his account provides on the one hand an expla- 
nation of how null elements could be introduced to the system of 
special pronominals, and on the other evidence that the loss of overt 
third person clitics is associated with changes in their pattern of 
movement, and conceivably with reanalysis introducing properties 
not shared by overt special pronominals. 

6. Conclusion 

The preceding sections have established that island-insensitive ob- 
ject drop, cliticization and "exceptional" CLLD are distributionally re- 
lated in a variety of languages, motivating the conclusion that the 
same mechanism is involved; the presence of ECLLD of definite ob- 
jects in Quiteno, and Brazilian, which have definite object drop, di- 
rectly parallels the ECLLD of indefinites in the lOD language Greek 
and Bulgarian. In each case we also find gaps in the clitic paradigm 
corresponding to the proposed null counterparts. 

The presence of null "clitics" would explain the cluster of ob- 
served phenomena in a maximally simple way, requiring no addi- 
tional stipulations for the lOD languages Greek and Bulgarian. The 
pattern of apparent Binding Condition C restrictions associated with 
definite object drop remains to be reconciled with this analysis. Since 
an account of object drop in terms of a topic operator, in the style of 
Huang (1984), is problematic for these languages because it predicts 
that object drop should be sensitive to islands, the null clitic analysis 
nevertheless appears to be the best way to account for island-in- 
sensitive object drop. At any rate the principle C effects are also 
problematic for alternative analyses, since a null anaphor would not 
a priori be expected to behave like a referential entity. 


Dimitriadis: Clitics and island-insensitive object drop 167 

The data discussed establishes that the same null element 
serves as the variable in ECLLD and island-insensitive object drop. 
The claim that this null element is indeed similar to a pronominal 
clitic is somewhat more open to question, but in my opinion suffi- 
ciently well-motivated by the presence of appropriate paradigmatic 
gaps in the overt clitic paradigm of each language and the correspon- 
dence in the construal characteristics of the constructions in question. 

I based the notion of null "clitics," more properly null special 
pronominals, on a typological generalization of the syntactic category 
of which pronominal "special clitics" are members. Although the 
syntactic status and properties of clitics remain mysterious, the em- 
pirical coverage achieved in this paper can be taken as evidence 
against accounts that make overtness an essential property of 
pronominal clitics. 


* Much of the work presented here was done during the Spring, 
1994 Workshop in Syntax and Semantics (Linguistics 555), whose 
participants I would like to thank for their input: Michael Hegarty, 
Sabine latridou, Victoria Tredinnick, Roumyana Izvorski, and Chung- 
hye Han. Special thanks to Bernhard Rohrbacher and Jairo Nunes for 
their contributions regarding the Brazilian data and bibliography, 
and to Roumyana Izvorski for Bulgarian. 

' Kato (1993) has also proposed that object drop in Brazilian 
Portuguese involves a null clitic. Her analysis is discussed in section 

-^ Special pronominals are thus distinct from "weak pronouns," 
another phonologically defined class. 

3 If for example we consider clitics to be "the overt spelling out 
of a vv/2-trace," then the null counterpart to clitics would be the wh- 
trace. This is obviously incompatible with my proposal; cf. Cinque 
(1990, p. 61) for a discussion of the problems that CLLD raises for 
this conception of clitics. 

4 For example, latridou (forthcoming) discusses subject CLLD, in 
which a subject NP is left-adjoined; in this case, subject pro functions 
as the CLLD variable. 

5 The precise class of NPs that can undergo ECLLD in Greek is 
difficult to determine, but appears to be coextensive with the class of 
NPs that (under a given interpretation) cannot be cliticized. 

6 Sentences (15a) and (16b) are degraded if an adverbial (such 
as "during the winter"), or an overt subject that is new information, 
is not present. 

168 Studies in tlie Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

^ In Greek, the left-adjoined NP and the complementizer can ap- 
pear in either order, as noted by latridou (forthcoming), whence ex- 
ample (26a). 


BlANCHI, v., & M. C. Figueiredo Silva. 1993. On some properties of 
agreement-object in Italian and in Brazilian Portuguese. Scuola 
Normale Superiore, Pisa, MS. 

Campos, H. 1986. Indefinite object drop. Linguistic Inquiry 17:2.354- 

Chomsky, N. 1982. Some concepts and consequences of the theory of 
Government and Binding. Cambridge: MIT. Press. 

Cinque, G. 1990. Types of A'-dependencies. Cambridge: MIT. Press. 

DIMITRIADIS, A. 1994. Clitics and object drop in Modern Greek. 
Proceedings of the Sixth Student Conference in Linguistics, 
University of Rochester. MITWPL 23. 

Farrell, p. 1990. Null objects in Brazilian Portuguese. Natural 
Language and Linguistic Theory 8.325-346. 

Galves, C. C. 1989. L'Objet Nul et la structure de la proposition en 
Portugais du Bresil. Revue des Langues Romanes 93:2.305-336. 

Huang, C. T. J. 1984. On the distribution and reference of empty pro- 
nouns. Linguistic Inquiry 15:4.531-574. 

lATRIDOU, S. Forthcoming. Clitics and island effects. Linguistic Inquiry. 

IZVORSKI, R. 1994. Yes-no questions in Bulgarian: Implications for 
phrase structure. Paper presented at the 9th Conference on 
Balkan and South Slavic Linguistics, Literature, and Folklore, 
Indiana University, Bloomington, April 1994. 

JaeGGLI, O., & C. Silva-Corvalan, eds. 1986. Studies in Romance lin- 
guistics. Dordrecht: Foris. 

KATO, M. a. 1993. The distribution of pronouns and null elements in 
object position in Brazilian Portuguese. Linguistic perspectives on 
the Romance languages, ed. by W. J. Ashby, M. Mithun, G. 
Perissinotto, & E. Raposo, 225-235. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. 

LUJAN, M. 1980. Clitic promotion and mood in Spanish verbal com- 
plements. Linguistics 18.38 1-484. 

NUNES, J. M. 1992. Directionality of cliticization, distribution of clitics, 
and null objects in Brazilian Portuguese. University of Maryland 
at College Park, draft MS. 

Raposo, E. 1986. On the null object in European Portuguese. Studies in 
Romance linguistics, ed. by O. Jaeggli & C. Silva-Corvalan, 373- 
390. Dordrecht: Foris. 

RlZZI, L. 1982. Negation, H'/?-movement and the null subject parame- 
ter. Issues in Italian syntax, ed. by L. Rizzi, 117-188. Dordrecht: 

. 1986. Null objects in Italian and the theory of pro. Linguistic 

Inquiry 17:3.501-557. 

RUDIN, C. 1986. Aspects of Bulgarian syntax: Complementizers and 
WH constructions. Columbus, Ohio: Slavica. 

Dimitriadis: Clitics and island-insensitive object drop 169 

SpORTICHE, D. 1986. Jibun. Linguistic Inquiry 17:2.369-374. 

SUNER, M., & M. Yepez. 1988. Null definite objects in Quiteno. 
Linguistic Inquiry 19:3.5 1 1-5 19. 

TarALLO, F. 1985. The filling of the gap: Pro-drop rules in Brazilian 
Portuguese. Selected papers from the 13th Linguistic Symposium 
on Romance Languages, ed. by L. D. King & C. A. Maley, 355-375. 
Amsterdam: John Benjamins. 

TaralLO, F. L. 1983. Relativization strategies in Brazilian Portuguese. 
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Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


George Fowler 

Indiana University 

GFowler® Indiana. Edu 

Russian verbal prefixes are argued to be underlyingly 
separate syntactic functional heads, although by ortho- 
graphic and lexicological tradition they can never be sepa- 
rated from the verbal stems to which they attach. 
Arguments for their separate status are provided from 
phonology (vocalization of jers, assignment of stress) and 
morphology (the treatment of irregular verbs). It is shown 
that this analysis gives a neat account of the contribution 
made by prefixes to a verb's argument structure and 
government properties. 

1 . Introduction 

Russian is a language with a variety of fascinating phenomena. 
It may be no accident that a disproportionate number of the influen- 
tial structural linguists of the 20th century worked on Russian. 
However, although Russian figured in a considerable amount of gen- 
erative research in the 1960's and 1970's, it receded to a more mod- 
est position in the 1980's. Recent work on functional categories has 
triggered a small explosion in the theoretical syntax of Russian, as 
Slavists and general syntacticians alike have been exploring the 
ramifications of this methodological apparatus for Russian and other 
Slavic languages. This paper offers both theoretical and descriptive 
innovations in the analysis of Russian prefixed verbs, treating verbal 
prefixes as syntactically separate functional heads (despite the fact 
that they are never physically separable, as in, e.g., Hungarian or 
German), bearing the same relation to the verb as prepositions have 
to the noun. This approach makes intuitive sense, because in Russian, 
as in many languages, the inventory of verbal prefixes closely 
recapitulates the set of prepositions. 

In section 2 I survey the phonological and morphological evi- 
dence that prefixes should be treated as syntactically separate. 
Section 3 is devoted to questions of case and prepositional govern- 
ment. In the conclusion 1 take up the parallelism between 
prepositions and verbal prefixes. 

2. Formal Evidence for Separate Verbal Prefixes 

First, let's consider the nuts-and-bolts motivation for handling 
prefixes as syntactically discrete elements, despite the fact that in 
standard dictionaries and grammars of Russian, prefixed verbs are 

172 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1 994) 

regarded as distinct lexemes, with the prefix added to the basic 
verbal stem through a strictly lexical process of word formation.' 

We can start with the bracketing paradox observed by David 
Pesetsky (1985), 2 associated with the past-tense paradigm of the 
verb pod-zec"set on fire' in [1].3 

[1] a. pod-zeg-MASC, podo-zgla-FEM, podo-zglo-NEUT, podo-zgli-PL 

b. [[[podu- + zTg-] + 1] + u] [[[podu- + zTg-] + 1] + a] 

c. [podu- 4- [[zTg- + 1] -I- u]] [podu(- + [[zTg- -i- 1] -i- a]] 

[2] podo-sel, podo-sla, podo-slo, podo-sli 'approached' 

Note that an extra o follows the prefix pod- in all forms but the mas- 
culine. Pesetsky was working in a theoretical framework that incor- 
porates level-ordered morphology and derives Russian vowel/zero 
alternations from underlying 'jers', or abstract short lax vowels. 
Basically, jers vocalize when they are followed by a jer in the follow- 
ing syllable; otherwise they disappear. Pesetsky pointed out that 
there is a problem in getting the jers to work out in this paradigm. 
The natural morphological bracketing for this verb is [lb], where the 
innermost derived unit, the lexical verb pod- zee', is created on the 
second level of the morphology. On this cycle the jer at the end of the 
prefix vocalizes because a jer is present in the next syllable. This will 
happen inevitably in BOTH the masculine and feminine past tense 
forms, each given in [lb]. In the masculine the root jer also vocalizes 
on the last cycle, due to the desinential jer. This is correct, but the 
vocalization of the jer after the prefix is wrong, since the prefixal jer 
actually vocalizes in only those forms in which the root jer doesn't 
vocalize. The bracketing in [lb] is correct for a verb like podos'el, 
given in [2], where the prefix-final jer vocalizes THROUGHOUT the past 
tense. The jer vocalization of podzeg, podozgla only works out if we 
assume the morphological bracketing in [Ic], where first the past 
tense -/ is added, followed by the vowel of the desinence, and only 
then, on the last cycle, is the prefix attached. So when the desinential 
jer causes the root jer to vocalize in the masculine form, there is no 
following jer to cause the prefix-final jer to vocalize. However, in the 
remaining forms of the paradigm, the root jer is unaffected, and it 
thus triggers vocalization of the prefix-final jer. This predicts all the 
facts, but defies common sense. 

Pesetsky' s 'solution' is to state that this kind of bracketing para- 
dox is the way things are supposed to be. The verb pod-zee' has one 
semantic bracketing, corresponding to [lb], and one morphological 
structure, corresponding to [Ic]. Both structures are mapped to the 
word in the lexicon, rather in the spirit of Sadock 1991 This could 
conceivably be the way language works. Nevertheless, if a unified 
structural approach is feasible, it is surely preferable. So let's 
consider the structure in [3]. 

Fowler: Verbal prefixes as functional heads 
[3] IP 

I P(refix)P 


Here I take the prefix to be a functional head projected above V by 
virtue of the lexical properties of a verb. The meaning is generally 
compositional. The lexical entry must specify that the verb pod-zee' 
includes a functional superstructure with the prefix pod-. In the 
syntax, the verbal head raises to adjoin to the prefix, for the usual 
kind of morphological reasons: the prefix is a bound morpheme, and 
the sentence will be ill-formed unless it is attached to a verbal head. 

If the approach to verbal prefixation illustrated in [3] is correct, 
it gives us a natural and principled solution to the bracketing prob- 
lem observed by Pesetsky: the prefix is added last not merely by 
stipulation (because that's the way the lexical phonology can be 
made to work out), but because it is really a syntactically discrete el- 
ement, and the verb raises to the prefix-functional head. Following 
Chomsky 1992, I assume that the entire inflectional paradigm is pre- 
sent in the lexicon; an individual form is SELECTED based on Tense and 
Agreement features acquired in the syntax, but the prefix is actually 
ADDED in the syntax."* 

It turns out that adding prefixes in the syntax rather than the 
lexicon can resolve other morphological and phonological problems as 
well; let's now examine several of these. One concerns the form of the 
imperative in verbs containing the stressed prefix vy-. As shown in 
[4], the imperative takes two desinences in Russian: -/ is general, but, 
simplifying only slightly, verbs with stem-stress throughout the 
present tense take -0.^ 


Present tense end-stress 

Imperative in -/ 

govori 'speak!' 

govorit-3.SG, etc. 

Present tense stem-stress-^ Imperative in - 

stavit-3.SG, etc. 

Slav' 'put!' 

174 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

But now consider the form of the imperative when these, verbs are 
prefixed with stressed vv-: as we see in [5], the presence or absence 
of -/ is conditioned not by the form of the stem, which, under a 
traditional view of what a stem includes, would certainly be charac- 
terized as fixed stem-stress, but rather by the form of the UNPREFIXED 

[5] vy-govorju-l.SG -^ vy-govori 'speak out' 
vy-govorit-3.SG, etc. 

vy-stavlju-l.SG -> vy-stav' 'put out' 


vy-stavit-3.SG, etc. 

There are various ways we could work this fact into our phonological 
rules, but if vy- is added last, because the inflected verb has to raise 
up to it in the syntax, then this is very natural and requires no 
exceptional special rules. The stem has its own inventory of forms, 
unaffected by the prefix. The prefix vy- has its own stress — a lexical 
fact about this prefix — which supersedes the stress of the stem, but 
doesn't influence the selection of the desinence. 

A third argument of this nature is supplied by verbs like pit' 
'drink'. Because the root hosts a vowel/zero alternation, we have to 
posit a jer as the underlying root vowel. In the present tense, as 
shown for the first-person singular in [6], the jer is underlyingly 
stressed, fails to vocalize and therefore disappears, and the stress 
moves to the only available vowel, the -u in the desinence. 

[6] p'tJ'U -^ P'-J-u -^ P'j-u 'drink- l.SG' 

We know that the underlying stress must fall on the jer because of 
the systematic pattern: essentially all verbs with stem-final j have 
fixed stem stress, as demonstrated in [7].^ 

[7] duj-: duju-l.SG, diijes'-2.SG, dujet-3.SG, etc. 'blow' 
znaj-: znaju-l.SG, znajes'-2.SG, znaet-3.SG, etc. 'know' 
otkroj-: otkroju-l.SG, otkr6es'-2.SG, otkr6et-3.SG, etc. 'open' 

Now consider what happens to the verb when it is prefixed, as 
in a verb like po-pit' 'take a drink'. In this case, the verb has a prefix, 
so the stress could potentially move to the left, onto the prefix. 
However, it doesn't — it still moves to the right, producing forms like 
po-p'ju instead of *pd-p'ju, as in [8]. 

[8] po-p'tj-u -^ po-p'Jj-u -^ po-pj-ij 'take a drink' 


Movement of stress to the right in this case flies in the face of the 
widespread pattern whereby stress on an unvocalized jer moves one 
syllable to the left. We can see this most clearly in cases where an 
unvocalized jer stands between two syllables, so that the stress could 

Fowler: Verbal prefixes as functional heads 175 

potentially move in either direction. Consider the stress of the plural 
forms of the noun sein'ja, given in [9]. 

[9] NOM sem'i 'family' 

ACE sem'i 

GEN semej 

DAT s e m 'j a m 

LOC sem'jax 

INST sem'jami 

Russian has no attested pattern with a stress shift from one syllable 
to another within the stem; all alternations involve shifts between 
stem and desinence. Therefore this paradigm must represent some 
variety of fixed stem stress. This will only work if we assume that 
the stem has fixed stress on the underlying jer in the second syllable. 
Then, as shown in [10], when that jer fails to vocalize, the orphaned 
stress COULD potentially move either to the right, onto the desinence, 
or to the left, onto the first syllable of the stem. 

[10] sem'lj-i -^ sem'Jj-i — > sem'-i 

In fact, it moves to the left; this is the systematic treatment of stress 
orphaned by the loss of an unvocalized jer. 

This being the case, we now have a neat account of the fact we 
saw in [8]. Leftward movement of orphaned stress is systematic, but 
it is not available in the verb po-p'jii, because at the point when 
stress is determined on the inflected stem, in the lexicon, it does not 
have a prefix attached — it is merely associated in the functional 
superstructure of the verb. 

Now, of course, there ARE cases when stress does fall on the pre- 
fix in mobile past tense stress like the verb po-njat' 'understand': po- 
nJal-MASC.PAST, po-njald-FEM.PAST . However, these cases represent 
phrasal stress, not word stress; they are parallel to cases when the 
stress retracts from a noun onto a preposition, as in [11]. 

[11] za ruku 'by the hand' 

iz domu 'from home', etc. 

This is yet another reason to unite prepositions and prefixes into one 
functional category. 

A fourth morphological fact which indicates that prefixes are 
syntactically distinct from verbs is the existence of irregular prefixed 
paradigms, as noted in [12]. 

[12] budu-l.SG 'be' + za- -> za-budu-l.SG 'forget' 
budcs'-2.SG za-budes'-2.SG 

budet-3.SG, etc. za-budet-3.SG, etc. 

dam-l.SG 'give' + raz- -> raz-dam-l.SG 'hand out' 
das'-2.SG raz-das'-2.SG 

dast-3.SG raz-dast-3.SG, etc. 

176 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994 ) 

'Be' and 'give' are classic, maximally irregular verbs in Russian. If 
prefixes are built into lexical stems, as traditionally assumed, then 
the lexical specification of irregular paradigms must be repeated for 
each prefixed verb in these groups. However, under my analysis, we 
can specify one irregular pattern for each unprefixed stem, and then, 
since that same stem is used with a different functional superstruc- 
ture for each prefix, it will automatically be captured without further 

The four arguments given in this section provide adequate evi- 
dence on the formal side that treating Russian prefixes as syntacti- 
cally separate from verb stems has serious advantages. Let's now 
turn our attention to the consequences of this proposal for verbal 

3. Case and Prepositional Government via Prefixes 

If it is correct that verbal prefixes are actually functional heads, 
then it isn't enough to project a head P and P(refix)P, as in [3]: we 
must have a Specifier position as well. An emerging consensus sug- 
gests that if we posit functional projections, they need to be com- 
plete, i.e., not merely heads, but with the full range of internal X-bar 
positions. Accordingly, [3] should be revised as [13]. 




What can we do with the Spec of P(refix)P position in this structure? 
The obvious possibility is to exploit it for verbal government. This 
can be accomplished through the combination of Spec-Head 
agreement and argument structure. 

Consider the canonical case of the internal and external 
arguments of a verb, represented schematically in [14]. 

[14] VP 

NP, V 

V NP, 

Fowler: Verbal prefixes as functional heads 



In the standard case, a verb may take an internal argument, its 
object, as well as an external argument, its subject. Some verbs are 
defective, lacking either a subject or an object. There are a number of 
proposals in the literature to the effect that functional categories 
may project a parallel argument structure of their own. For example, 
Stowell 1992 proposes that Tense is, in effect, a two-argument 
predicate whose argument structure combines with the argument 
structure of the verb itself. Yadroff and King 1994 make a similar 
claim about Tense and Aspect in Russian. They propose the structure 
in [15], and argue that the internal argument of Tns is AspectP, while 
its external argument, in Spec of TnsP, is a variable representing 
Reference time. 







Spec Asp' 
Asp VP 





I would like to make a similar proposal about verbal prefixes: that 
they incorporate their own argument structure, which invariably 
includes an internal argument, the VP, and MAY also include an 
external argument position in Spec of P(refix)P. Let's look at a few 
examples to see how this works. 

Many verbs in Russian form a durative through the addition of 
the prefix pro-; a couple of examples are given in [16] and [17]. 

[16] a. Ivan sidel tixo (cas). 

Ivan / sat / quietly / (hour-ACC) 
'Ivan sat quietly (for an hour).' 
b. Ivan pro-sidel cas//*0. 

Ivan / sat-DUR / hour-ACC // *0 
'Ivan spent an hour//*0 sitting.' 

[17] a. Masa citala A«/JM Kareninu. 

Masa / read / Anna Karenina-ACC 
'Masa was reading Anna Karcnina.' 
b. Masa pro-citala vsju noc'. 

Masa / read-DUR / all / night-ACC 
'Masa spent all night reading.' 

In [16a] we see an intransitive verb with an optional adjunct time 
adverbial in the Accusative case. In Russian (as in many other Ian- 

178 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2(1 994) 

guages), this has nothing to do with the verb per se — Accusative time 
adverbials can be found with nominalizations, the copula, predicate 
adjectives, etc. However, with the addition of the prefix pro- in [16b] 
the time expression gets promoted to what is called a "quasi-argu- 
ment" in Fowler & Yadroff 1993. Note that it is no longer optional. 

In [17a] we see a typical transitive verb which takes an 
Accusative object. If we add pro-, as in [17b], we get the same kind 
of argument-like duration phrase. If we now attempt to combine an 
Accusative duration adverbial with a direct object, we find, some- 
what surprisingly, that the result is generally grammatical. Two 
examples from Fowler and Yadroff 1993 are given in [18]. 

[18] a. Galja pro-poloskala vse utro bel'e. 

Galja / rinsed-DUR / all-ACC / morning-ACC / laundry-ACC 
'Galja spent all morning rinsing the laundry." 
b. Vanja pro-nes tjazelyj cemodan kilometr. 

Vanja / carried-DUR / heavy / suitcase / kilometer-ACC 
'Vanja carried the heavy suitcase a [whole] kilometer.' 

It was argued in Fowler and Yadroff 1993 that the existence of sen- 
tences like [18a-b] rules out the otherwise appealing hypothesis that 
prefixation with durative pro- causes the prefixed verb to select for 
a temporal NP as direct object, displacing the notional patient or 
theme, much as the English verb spend selects for a temporal object 
in the translations of these sentences. However, both NPs can coexist, 
and thus it cannot be the case that durative pro- selects the temporal 
NP as the direct object, i.e., the internal NP argument of the verb.'^ 

So how does addition of durative pro- affect the verb? 1 suggest 
that it selects an external argument in a structure like [19]. 

[19] IP [= 18a] 

Spec y 



vse utro P(refix) 
pro- Spec 

In this structure, the verbal head, the unprefixed verb poloskat', 
takes two arguments, the external argument Galja and the internal 
argument bel'e. As usual, it assigns an appropriate G-role to each of 



Fowler: Verbal prefixes as functional heads 179 

ihem. One level further up the verb 'finds' the prefix pro-. It too has 
an argument structure: it takes an internal argument, the VP com- 
plement, AND an external argument, which is an obligatory duration 
phrase (time or distance), and assigns it a G-role, call it the 9-role 
Measure. The essentially predicational effect of the prefix pro- in this 
meaning can be summed up informally along the lines of [20]. 

[20] pro-: duration (measure, event [=VP]) 

The formula in [20] states that the prefix pro- expresses a duration 
relation between the event conveyed in the VP and a measure 
phrase, which will normally be an Accusative NP with the meaning of 
time or distance. 

Returning to example [18a] and the structure in [19], I suggest 
that case is assigned to the Accusative measure phrase by Spec-Head 
agreement between the Prefix head pro- and its Specifier, the mea- 
sure phrase. The mechanism of Spec-Head agreement has been put to 
similar employment in Chomsky 1992.*^ 

First let's consider what happens when pro- is added to an in- 
transitive verb; the pertinent example is [16b]. It will have a struc- 
ture similar to [19], except that there is no internal argument within 
VP. As noted before, the prefixed verb remains intransitive; for 
example, it can't be passivized, as shown in [21]. 

[21] *Cas byl prosizen Ivanom. 

hour / was / sat through / by Ivan 

The prefix pro- has an Accusative case feature, which is passed on to 
the duration NP through Spec-Head agreement. As it happens, this is 
quite a regular property of the prefix pro-. It has a variety of sub- 
meanings [Svedova 1980, the latest Russian Academy Grammar, lists 
8], and in several of them, pro- prefixed to intransitive verbs adds an 
argument marked in the Accusative case. A few examples are given 
in [22]; more could be adduced. 

[22] a. Boris proexal ostanovku. [submeaning: 'past, miss'] 

Boris / rode past / stop-ACC 
'Boris rode past [missed] his stop.' 

b. [Vy] prosentimental'nicali svoju zizn'. ['use up'] 

you / wasted being sentimental / self's / life-ACC 
'[You] wasted your life being sentimental." 

c. My prosli Zund, lis' stixnul storm. ['go by, through'] 
we / went by / Zund-ACC / as soon as / abated / gale 

'We went by Zund as soon as the gale quieted down.' 

These Accusative NP's don't seem to qualify as direct objects. A con- 
venient test is passivization, and they quite generally fail to create 
passive equivalents. So, while Russian dictionaries and grammars la- 
bel such prefixed verbs as "transitive", that label merely reflects the 
presence of an Accusative NP rather than a structural direct object. 

180 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

defined simply as the internal NP argument of a verb, the NP sister 
to V within V' in the generic structure in [14]. Instead. I claim that 
these verbs are what you might term "pseudo-transitive": they have 
a surface similarity to transitive verbs, but the Accusative NP is 
actually the added argument of the prefix. 

Space requirements prohibits a detailed examination of preposi- / 
tional government by prefixed verbs, but the formal analysis of the f 
structure of prefixed verbs proposed here accounts neatly for the ^ 
natural phenomenon of prepositional government. A great many " 
prefixes, in a great many of their submeanings. add PP arguments to 
sentences. In the canonical case, a prefix requires a PP containing the 
matching preposition. Several examples are given in [23], and these 
could be multiplied almost without end. 

[23] a. Ptica otletela ot zabora. 

bird / flew away from / from / fence 

'The bird flew [some distance] away from the fence.' 

b. Ucitel'nica vosla v auditoriju. 
teacher / went in / into / classroom 
The teacher went into the classroom.' 

c. Ne dodruzili do otkrovennosti? 

NEG / become friendly up to a point / up to / openness 
'You didn't become friendly enough to be open with each 

4. Conclusion: The Status of Prepositions 

This close semantic similarity between prefix and preposition 
has of course been noted before. Indeed, it underlies much of the 
structuralist attempts to uncover invariant meanings in the prefix 
and preposition systems of Russian and the other Slavic languages. 9 
However, the formal side has been investigated much less inten- 
sively in the literature, perhaps because it is so obvious: the majority 
of prefixes are formally identical to prepositions, and of those that 
aren't, there is generally either an etymological relation obscured 
somewhat by historical phonology (e.g., the prefix pred- 'pre-' corre- 
sponds to the preposition pered 'before') or there is outright supple- 
tion (the prefix vv- corresponds to the preposition iz; the prefix 
pere- also corresponds in certain meanings to the preposition cerez~ 
etc.). The analysis proposed here makes this correspondence explicit: 
prepositional government, like the addition of a cased NP argument. \ 
is the result of Spec-Head agreement between a prefix and its V 
external argument.' o 

However, my analysis makes us wonder about the nature of 
prepositions. If prefixes and prepositions are essentially alike, and if 
prefixes occur as functional heads projected above verbs, then what 
about prepositions? I would like to suggest in conclusion, without 
giving comprehensive arguments in favor of this idea, that preposi- 
tions taking NP complements are NOT lexical categories, but are in fact 


Fowler: Verbal prefixes as functional heads 1 8 1 

functional projections of the Russian noun. Under this view, nouns 
can be said to take at least the set of functional projections given in 

[24] PP 

[K = Case] 

In [24] I adopt the standard GB view that nouns project a DP. add to 
that the view accepted by at least some Slavic syntacticians fcf. 
Toman 1991, 1994) that there is a projection of Case, and extend this 
naturally to prepositional marking of NPs, regarding prepositions as a 
kind of super-case. This reflects some traditional approaches to 
Russian case, where a preposition and the case marker have often 
been regarded as a kind of discontinuous morpheme, or at least inex- 
tricably bound to one another. Moreover, in any language with a 
large number of oblique cases, such as Hungarian or Finnish, a lot of 
the work done by prepositions in Russian. English, or other languages 
of this basic type is instead handled by oblique case markings. 
Indeed, in Hungarian it is difficult to distinguish case suffixes from 
postpositions on formal or semantic grounds. 

I will give one brief argument in favor of this view of Russian 
prepositions. Russian freely permits ellipsis of referential NPs. as 
illustrated in [25a]. 

[25] a. Misa napisal pis'mo? Da. [e] napisal [e]. 

Misa / wrote / letter^^c ^ Y^^ ^ [^] ^ wrote / [e]. 
'Did Misa write the letter? Yes. [he] wrote [it].' 
b. Misa zanimalsja etoj temoj? Da. [e] zanimalsja [e]. 

Misa / worked on / this / topiC/ ^sr ^ ^^^ / [^] / worked on / 

'Did Misa work on this topic? Yes. [he] worked on [it]." 

The same phenomenon occurs just as readily with oblique NPs. for 
example, the Instrumental NP in [25b]. But now consider the pattern 
of ellipsis in prepositional phrases. 

[26] a. Misa govoril s Ivanom? Da. [e] govoril [e]. 

Misa / spoke / with / Ivan,v5r / yes. / [e] / spoke / [e] 
'Did Misa speak with Ivan? Yes. [he] spoke [with him].' 
b. *Misa govoril s Ivanom? Da. [e] govoril s [e]. 

Misa / spoke / with / Ivan^vsr / yes, / [e] / spoke / with / [e] 

182 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

Under the same ellipsis conditions, the entire PP is deleted, as in 
[26a]. It is completely impossible to retain the preposition while 
deleting its object, as in [26b]. Yet this is not what we would expect if 
P were a lexical category alongside V, N, and A, because there are no 
comparable ellipsis restrictions with those lexical categories. This 
pattern provides additional confirmation that prepositions are func- 
tional rather than lexical categories, and capture the difference as il- 
lustrated in [24]. The category of P is the ultimate functional head: it 
combines with both verbs and nouns. Note that this analysis also 
gives us a natural account of obligatory Pied Piping in w/i-movement 
from Russian prepositional phrases, without having to resort to 

As I have demonstrated in this paper, there are excellent argu- 
ments from phonology, morphology, and syntax in favor of analyzing 
Russian verbal prefixes as syntactically discrete functional heads, 
added to verbs in the syntax through a rule verb raising, following 
Pollock 1989 and many subsequent works. Indeed, it seems that the 
standard term prefix should be abandoned for these morphemes in 
Russian, and replaced by the competing term preverb, which is often 
used with respect to languages with separable prefixes (German, 
Hungarian, etc.). Prefixes do exist in Russian, but only as strictly 
morphological elements, added in the lexicon rather than in the syn- 
tax. Russian preverbs provide yet another fascinating example of the 
fuzzy interface between morphology and syntax.' ' 


* An earlier version of some of this material was presented at 
Formal Approaches to Slavic Linguistics 3 (to appear as Fowler 
1994a). I am grateful to the following individuals for valuable sug- 
gestions and comments: Catherine V. Chvany, Stephen Franks. Frank 
Y. Gladney, Jonathan Ludwig, Michael Yadroff. Naturally, all dubious 
decisions remain my own responsibility. 

' One exception is Gladney 1978, where prefixes are treated as 
syntagmatically separate within VP, but without the kind of highly 
articulated structure assumed in current work on functional cate- 
gories. Waliriska 1990 offers a proposal not unlike mine, but focuses 
on aspect, which is not of primary concern here. 

2 The idea was first presented in Pesetsky's unpublished but 
widely disseminated 1979 MIT paper. 

3 Throughout this paper, prefixes are separated out by a hyphen 
to allow for immediate morphological parsing. However, nothing 
similar is done in Russian orthography. 

4 While no material can intervene between the prefix and verb 
in Russian or the other Slavic languages, in other languages we CAN 
find material there. I assume that the range of possibilities is due to 

Fowler: Verbal prefixes as functional heads 183 

a combination of morphological factors — whether or not the prefix is a 
bound morpheme, the morphological type of head it can attach to, 
and so forth — AND syntactic factors — above all, the position of the 
prefix head in the various projections within Infl. 

5 Such imperatives are traditionally said to take -0. and the 
surface form is certainly a -0. However, given a lexical-phonology 
approach including underlying abstract jers, as in Pesetsky 1985, the 
desinence could equally well be said to be a final jer which never 
vocalizes. This distinction is irrelevant to the present argument. 

6 The only exceptions are imperfectives derived by means of the 
suffix -avaj from prefixed verbs built on three roots: znaj- 'know', 
dad- 'give', and stan- 'stand'. This suffix exhibits another major ir- 
regularity as well, unpredictable loss of -va- in conjugation, and it 
seems justified to regard end-stress with this suffix as equally 

^ Discussion of this phenomenon in the Slavic literature (e.g.. 
Flier 1985: 45-46) has been confused by the unfortunate reliance on 
the verb citat' 'read' for key examples, such as [i]. 

[i] ''Masa pro-citala Annu Kareninu vsju noc'. 

Masa / read-DUR / Anna Karenina-ACC / all / night-ACC 
■■'Masa spent all night reading Anna Karenina.' 

The problem is that there are (at least) two major homonymous 
forms pro-citat': the durative, which we are attempting to focus on 
here. AND the plain perfective, which has essentially resultative 
meaning. The plain perfective is illustrated in [ii]. 

[ii] Masa pro-citala Annu Kareninu. 

Masa / read-PF / Anna Karenina-ACC 

'Masa read Anna Karenina.' [='Masa got Anna Karenina read."] 

In principle, it ought to be possible to force [i] with the intended du- 
rative reading, and in fact some informants do acknowledge it. 
However, there is a striking case of interference at work here. When 
duration is specified with perfective verbs, the bare Accusative NP is 
totally ungrammatical, as illustrated in [iii], and instead Russian 
requires a prepositional phrase with za 'for, in'. 

[iii] Masa pro-citala Annu Kareninu *dva casa//za dva casa. 

Masa / read-PF / Anna Karenina-ACC / *two / hours // in / 

two / hours 
'Masa read Anna Karenina *two hours//in two hours.' 

The problem with [i] is that, when confronted with this sentence, 
Russian speakers immediately leap to the majority reading of pro- 
citat' as perfective, and reject the sentence because of the incorrect 
time adverbial. It takes an imaginative informant to "reach through" 
this interference to the intended durative reading. 

184 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

8 The ensuing discussion of case assignment to the Accusative 
temporal NP associated with a pro- durative builds upon an idea 
suggested by Michael Yadroff in an early presentation of the paper 
that became Fowler and Yadroff 1993. It was eliminated from the 
published version because we couldn't make it work out at the time. 

9 A notable example is van Schooneveld 1978, and similar goals 
still govern work being done today; e.g., Janda 1985 offers interest- 
ing intuitions about the submeanings of the prefix za- within the 
framework of cognitive grammar. How satisfying such a strictly se- 
mantic account is largely a matter of ideology, based on one's 
attitude toward semantics-based linguistics in general. 

10 Not all prefixes change the argument structure of a sentence. 
Many leave the argument structure of the verb unaffected, adding 
some semantic nuance or twist to the verb's meaning that is 
compatible with the same set of VP-internal arguments.] 

1 1 For discussion of other problems at the morphology/syntax 
interface in Russian, see Fowler 1993, 1994b. 


Chomsky, Noam. 1992. A minimalist program for linguistic theory. 

MIT Occasional Papers in Linguistics 1. 
Flier, Michael S. 1985. The scope of prefixal delimitation in Russian. 

The scope of Slavic aspect, ed. by M. Flier and A. Timberlake, 41- 

58. Columbus, OH: Slavica. 
Fowler, George. 1993. A syntactic analysis of derivational -sja in 

Russian. American contributions to the 1993 International 

Congress of Slavists, ed. by R. and A. Timberlake, 270-84. 

Columbus, OH: Slavica. 
. 1994a. An articulated theory of aspect and prefixation in 

Slavic. Paper presented at Formal Approaches to Slavic 

Linguistics 3, College Park, MD, 15 May 1994. 
1994b. Word-internal case assignment in Russian. To appear in 

International Journal of Slavic Linguistics and Poetics. 
& Michael Yadroff. 1993. The argument status of accusative 

measure nominals in Russian. Journal of Slavic Linguistics 1(2): 

Gladney, Frank Y. 1978. Item and process in Russian verb inflection. 

American contributions to the 8th International Congress of 

Slavists, Zagreb and Ljubljana, September 3-9, 1978. Volume 1: 

Linguistics and poetics, ed. by H Birnbaum. 317-36. Columbus, 

OH: Slavica. 
Janda, Laura A. 1985. The meanings of Russian verbal prefixes: 

Semantics and grammar. The scope of Slavic aspect, ed. by M. 

Flier and A. Timberlake, 26-40. Columbus, OH: Slavica. 
PESETSKY, David. 1979. Russian morphology and lexical theory. M.l.T. 



Fowler: Verbal prefixes as functional heads 185 

. 1985. Morphology and lexical form. Linguistic Inquiry 16(2): 

Pollock, J.-Y. 1989.. Verb movement, universal grammar, and the 

structure of IP. Linguistic Inquiry 20(3): 365-424. 
Sadock, Jerrold M. 1991. Autolexical syntax: A theory of parallel 

grammatical representations. Chicago: University of Chicago 

VAN SCHOONEVELD, Cornelius. 1978. Semantic transmutations: 

Prolegomena to a calculus of meaning. Bloomington, IN: 

Stowell, Timothy. 1992. The structure of Tense. Paper given at 

Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, November 1992. 
SVEDOVA, N. Ju., ed. Russkaja grammatika. Moscow: Nauka, 1980, 2 v. 
Toman, Jindfich. 1991. Complex Kases: Evidence from Russian 

diminutives. U. of Michigan ms. 
. 1994. Case as a functional projection: A note on an issue in 

parametrization. Formal Approaches to Slavic Linguistics 1: 173- 

WaliMSKA, Hanna. 1990. The syntax of Slavic aspect. Proceedings of 

the 7th Amsterdam Colloquium, pt. 2, 615-35. Amsterdam: 

Universiteit van Amsterdam. 
YadroFF, Michael & Tracy Holloway King. 1994. SpecAspP and case 

assignment. Paper presented at Formal Approaches to Slavic 

Linguistics 3, College Park, MD, 15 May 1994. 



Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 



Stefan Frisch 
Northwestern University 

The standard view of syntactic change is that variation 
between competing forms culminates in the reanalysis of 
one of the forms. Under this view, reanalysis is a necessary 
reflex of the grammar which occurs when one form is lost in 
favor of another. I argue that reanalysis is not necessarily 
driven, but rather that it may be the product of innovation. 
Further, reanalysis need not be the culmination of variation 
and competition. In the case of the change in sentential 
negation in Middle English, a syntactic reanalysis occurs 
before competition between syntactic forms. 

1. Introduction 

According to one commonly accepted view of syntactic change, re- 
analysis is the end result of syntactic change (Lightfoot 1991). Ac- 
cording to this view, reanalysis is triggered when a new form rises to 
categorical use and the old form with which it was in competition 
drops out of use, with the loss of the old form forcing learners to give 
the new form a new structural analysis. But despite the conceptual 
appeal of this scenario, there is reason to doubt that it adequately 
describes syntactic change in the general case. Rather, a growing 
number of quantitative studies of syntactic change indicate that the 
emergence of a new structural option is the prerequisite, rather than 
the consequence, of syntactic variation and change (Kroch 1989, 
Santorini 1989, Taylor 1990 and 1994, Pintzuk 1991, Fontana 1993, 
see also Kiparsky 1994). In this paper, I present further evidence 
against the standard view of historical change on the basis of sen- 
tential negation in Middle English, which underwent drastic change 
between 1200 and 1400 AD. 

This paper differs from the above mentioned studies in that the 
change in negation in Middle English is not necessarily one involving 
parameter setting on the scale of the grammar (cf. Kroch 1989, 
1994). In the case at hand, the variation involves the syntactic and 
semantic properties of particular lexical items: the negative clitic ne 
and the negative adverb not. 

In the remainder of section 1. I introduce the basic paradigm of 
Middle English negation. In section 2, I sketch the standard view of 
the change in negation in Middle English and offer a pre-theoretic 
claim as to the nature of the change which contradicts the standard 
view. Section 3 introduces the theoretical assumptions which I will 
make concerning the more detailed structural and quantitative anal- 

his case. A 

which I ^ 

ludes the | 

188 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

ysis. In section 4, I establish the status of not as a sentence adverb in 
early Middle English. Section 5 details the quantitative results of 
studying the distribution of not over the entire Middle English pe- 
riod. In section 6, I offer an explanation for the mechanism of the 
change, and summarize the expected results of my claim versus the 
standard view. This section ends with a presentation of the data 
showing that reanalysis does precede syntactic change in this case. 
Section 7 investigates the driving force behind the change, 
claim to be semantic rather than syntactic. Section 8 conch 
paper with a summary of the results obtained. 

In Modern English, sentence adverbs appear in two different 
string locations in declarative sentences when an auxiliary verb is 

(1) Preverbal adverb: 

a. I never have liked him. 
Postverbal adverb: 

b. I have never liked him. 

These positions are parallel to the positions of sentence adverbs in 
Middle English. 

(2) Preverbal adverb: 

a. ... & heo naefre ne beo5 isceadde from pare 
... and she never neg is separated from there 
ece murhSe. 

each mirth. 

"... and she never is separated from each joy." 

(Bodley Homilies 12:126) 

Postverbal adverb: 

b. he ne mi3hte neure finde man of so grete chastete. 
he neg might never find man of so great chastity, 
"he might never find a man of such great chastity." 

(St. Edmund 434) 

The preverbal position is not available for Modern English not. 

(3) Preverbal not: 

a. *He not would answer the telephone. 
Postverbal not: 

b. He would not answer the telephone. 

By contrast, the preverbal position was available for not in early 
Middle English. The use of not in early Middle English examples like 

(4) is taken to be that of an emphatic negative, this emphasis is rep- 
resented by the material in parentheses in the glosses provided. 

Frisch: Reanalysis precedes syntactic change: Evidence from Middle English 189 

(4) Preverbal not: 

a. pat Jesuss nohht ne wollde Ben boren nowwhar i 
that Jesus not neg would be born nowhere in 
pe land, ... 

the land, ... 

"That Jesus did not (at all) want to be born anywhere in 

the land, ..." (Ormulum 1:122) 

Postverbal not: 

b. ... & he ne shal nou3t deceiue him. 
... and he neg shall not deceive him. 
"... and he shall not (in any way) deceive him." 

(Psalter 161:131:11) 

2. Claim 

While the syntax of other sentence adverbs like never has remained 
stable, not was reanalyzed from being a sentence adverb to being the 
sentential negator (Kroch 1989, Pollock 1989, Shanklin 1990, Roberts 
1993). This change is evident in two aspects of the use of not. The 
first is that the preverbal position in (4a) is lost for not. The second is 
that not loses its emphatic interpretation. 

The standard motivation for the change, which traces back to 
Jespersen (1917), is that, due to cliticization and phonological weak- 
ening, the negative particle ne was lost. Under Lightfoot's (1991) 
analysis of language change, the lack of ne forces language learners 
to reanalyze not as the sentential negator. 

Contrary to this standard view of the change, I claim that the re- 
analysis of not was the cause for the loss of the negative particle, ne, 
rather than a consequence of it. In particular, the loss of the prever- 
bal position for not occurs more than a century before the loss of ne. 
Thus, I claim that the reanalysis of not precedes the loss of ne. 

In addition, I claim that the syntactic reanalysis of not reflects 
the simultaneous semantic reanalysis of not. Not is reanalyzed as an 
ordinary, non-emphatic, sentential negator before ne is lost. The 
functional reanalysis of not can simultaneously explain the loss of the 
preverbal position of not and the loss of emphatic meaning for not. 
Once not is reanalyzed as a sentential negator, ne and not serve the 
same function. Ne is no longer necessary, and is lost. 

3. Theoretical assumptions 

Following Pollock (1989), I assume two INFL projections. In the re- 
mainder of the paper, I will refer to them as HP and LP as I am not 
concerned with their specific feature content. 1 also assume a func- 
tional projection of negation, NEGP, as shown in the tree in (5). 

190 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2(1 994) 

(5) Partial tree of clausal structure 

H NegP 

While Pollock's view is a convenient one for the following dis- 
cussion, the pre-theoretic claim in section 2, and the evidence I use 
to support it, is independent of the particular notation chosen. As we 
move on to the last sections, I will depend more crucially on the exis- 
tence of the NEGP projection in my explanation of the mechanism of 
the change. 

Roberts (1985) demonstrates that Middle English is a language 
with verb movement, like French. Thus, under standard assumptions, 
the verb will raise and adjoin to H in the overt syntax. In so doing, 
the verb will adjoin to the intermediate heads L and NEG (cf. Travis 
1984, Chomsky 1986). The existence of two INFL projections in 
Pollock's approach provides a convenient analysis of the preverbal 
and postverbal English sentence adverbs in (1). Sentence adverbs can 
be analyzed as phrasal adjuncts of INFL' (cf. Roberts, 1993). Pre- 
verbal adverbs are left-adjuncts of H', and thus appear linearly be- 
fore the verb or auxiliary in H. Postverbal adverbs are left-adjuncts 
of L'. 

I assume that Middle English ne is the head of NEGP (Pollock 
1989, Zanuttini 1991). Like its French cognate, it cliticizes onto the 
verb in subject-verb inversions like (6a). This behavior is reminis- 
cent of Modern English -n't (6b), which is taken to be a head by 
Kayne (1989). 

(6) a. [Ne canstu] me no3t know? 

neg can+you me not know 
"Can't you recognize me?" (King Horn 55) 
b. [Didn't] he arrive on time? 

Early Middle English not has the distribution of a sentence ad- 
verb, as demonstrated by its preverbal position in (4a). In later 
Middle English, there is evidence that not can also be used as a head, 
as in (7). 

(7) Head of NEGP not: 

[Am not] I lord and kyng of the cuntre? 

"Aren't I lord and king of the country?" (Digby Plays 100) 

Frisch: Reanalysis precedes syntactic change: Evidence from Middle English 191 

Even when ne is absent, not is not required to be a head, as shown 
by its stranding in the subject-verb inversion in (8). 

(8) Non-head not: 

[Wyll] he not com nere? 

"Won't he come near?" (Mankind 162) 

One of the difficulties in analyzing Middle English negation is 
that the majority of uses during the change are structurally am- 

(9) Crist shulde not haue suffred dep. 
"Christ should not have suffered death ..." 

(Wycliffite sermons 1:415) 

The possible positions of not in (9) are: 

• The lower sentence adverb position, adjoined to L'. 

• The head of NEGP. 

• The specifier of NEGP. 

In each case, not would appear postverbally. While the specifier of 
NEGP position is, at this point, unmotivated, it is the position used for 
Modern English not by Kayne (1989), Pollock (1989) and Zanuttini 
(1991). In addition, quantitative evidence presented in section 5 will 
demonstrate clearly that the specifier position is used by not during 
Middle English. 

In order to determine the status of not in examples like (9), I 
will adopt the null hypothesis, that the overall rate of use in ambigu- 
ous cases of the different structural options for not reflects their rate 
of use in unambiguous cases. In particular, examples like (10), re- 
peated from (4a, 7, 8) above, provide unambiguous information 
about the use of not. (10a) is an example of the use of not as a sen- 
tence adverb. (10b) is an example of the use of not as a head. (10c), 
while still ambiguous, is evidence that not is not used as a head, i.e. it 
is used as a sentence adverb or in the specifier position. 

(10) Adverbial not: 

a. pat Jesuss nohht nc wollde Ben boren nowwhar i 

That Jesus not neg would be born nowhere in 

pe land, ... 

the land, ... 

"That Jesus did not want to be born anywhere in the 

land, ..." (Ormulum 1:122) 

Head of NEGP not: 
h. [Am not] I lord and kyng of the cuntre? 

"Aren't I lord and king of the country?" (Digby Plays 100) 
Non-head not: 
c. [Wyll] he not com nere? 

"Won't he come near?" (Mankind 162) 

For the quantitative analysis, I use the diachronic part of the Helsinki 
corpus of English for the years 1150-1500.1 The northern dialect 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

texts were excluded from this study as Kroch & Taylor (1994) 
indicates that the northern dialect will behave differently from the 
other dialects with respect to preverbal negation. As has been shown, 
preverbal negation is a crucial diagnostic in the use of not as a sen- 
tence adverb. 

The quantitative analysis gives several results. During Middle 
English, not can occupy three distinct positions: the adverbial adjunct 
position, which is the same position as never, the specifier of NEGP, 
or the head of NEGP. Initially, not has the same distribution as never, 
and is thus a sentence adverb. Not is increasingly used in the speci- 
fier of NEGP during Middle English. Once specifier not is established, 
ne becomes optional, and not is able to be used as the head of NEGP. 
The results are explained in detail in sections 4, 5 and 6. 

4. Not in early Middle English (1150-1220 AD) 

As Kroch (1989) and Roberts (1993) observe, not is a sentence ad- 
verb in early Middle English. During the first 70 years of Middle 
English, not has the same syntactic distribution as never in declara- 
tive finite clauses. 

In the corpus studied, never appears preverbally in 16% of cases (35 
out of 216 potential instances), a rate identical to the 16% rate of 
preverbal use of never found in Kroch (1989). Thus, I assume that 
sentence adverbs in general will use the preverbal position in 16% of 
cases. If not is a sentence adverb, like never, it should appear pre- 
verbally in 16% of cases. Table 1 shows the results of a chi-square 
test on the actual distribution of preverbal not versus the expected 
distribution assuming an estimated rate of preverbal use of \6%.~ 

Table 1: not as a sentence adverb 


postverbal total 



69 85 
7 1 85 

X2 = 0.34 
p > 0.56 

The chi-square test is commonly used to determine the relative 
deviation between a sample distribution and the expected distribu- 
tion under some hypothesis. In this case, the hypothesis is that not is 
used preverbally at a rate of 16%, and thus, that not is a sentence 
adverb. The resulting p > 0.56 indicates that there is more than a 56% 
chance that the variation between the actual distribution of not and 
the expected distribution is due to chance. The standard criteria for a 
chi-square test is that a hypothesis is rejected when p < 0.05, i.e., 
when the probability that the actual distribution differs from the ex- 
pected distribution only as a result of random variation, is less than 
5%. Thus, the distribution of not in the first 70 years is consistent 

Frisch: Reanalysis precedes syntactic change: Evidence from Middle English 193 

with the analysis that not is used as a sentence adverb, and not as 
the sentential negator, during this period. 

There is additional structural evidence that not is a phrasal pro- 
jection, like an adverb. Both not and never can occupy clause initial 
position in verb-second clauses. 

( 1 1 ) a. ... and [nohht ne stannt it still]. 
... and not neg stood it still 

"... and it didn't stand still." (Ormulum, 1:125) 
b. swa [nauernulde he him sugge]; ... 

... so never neg+wou\d he him say; ... 
"... so he would never tell him; ..." (Layamon, 11:732) 

During this time period, there is no evidence that not is used as a 
head (0 out of 48 potential instances). Thus, all the available evi- 
dence indicates that not is originally used as a sentence adverb, and 
not as a sentential negator. 

5. The change in status of not (1220-1500 AD) 

The distribution of never remains constant for the remainder of the 
Middle English period. By contrast, preverbal not is lost. In addition, 
the sentential negator ne from Old English is also lost. The loss of 
preverbal not and the loss of ne reflects a general change in the 
syntactic status of not. Not is lost as a sentence adverb, and is reana- 
lyzed as the sentential negator. While this change is a subtle one, the 
change in the use of not from an ordinary lexical sentence adverb to 
a sentential negator with a specific functional role can be traced in 
the historical record. 

In section 5.1, I introduce the quantitative techniques used to 
estimate the use of not as a sentence adverb. In section 5.2, I present 
the quantitative data for the use of not as a head of NEGP. In section 
5.3, I show that the use of not as a sentence adverb and the use of 
not as a head is not sufficient to cover all of the data. I claim that the 
unaccounted for instances are cases of the use of not in the specifier 
of NEGP position. 

5.1. Loss of adverhial not 

We can model the loss of the adverbial status of not, using the distri- 
bution of never as an independent estimate, as was done in section 4, 
table 1. In that table, we used a 16% rate of use of preverbal not. We 
can then estimate the total number of adverbial not (both the pre- 
verbal and postverbal) tokens in each time period according to the 
following formula: 

N(preverbal not) = 0.16 x N(total adverbial not) 


N(total adverbial nor) = N(preverbal not) ^ 0.16. 

For example, in the first time period: 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

N(totaI adverbial not) = 16 h- 0.16 = 99 estimated actual adverbial 
uses of not. 

Thus, we gain our first insight into the ambiguous cases like example 
(9). Table 2 gives the results of this calculation for five 70 year time 
periods. Notice that the rate of use of adverb not drops from 100% 
use to 5% use during Middle English. 3 

Table 2: The 

loss of pre 

verbal not 




time period 



actual total 

% adverb 


























The results in table 2 are consistent with previous analyses of Middle 
English negation. Not is originally a sentence adverb, but it loses that 
function and becomes the sentential negator. 

5.2. Rise in head of NEGP not 

The next estimate for the behavior of not comes from examining 
subject-verb inversion constructions like questions and imperatives 
with overt subjects (cf. examples 7 and 8). These constructions give 
an independent estimate of the use of not as a head for each time 
period. Table 3 shows the use of the head position in inversion con- 

Table 3: The use of not as a head in inversions 

time period 



% head 

1 150-1220 










1 2 





1 5 


Again, as in the case of adverb not, I assume that the use of not as a 
head in inversion constructions provides an estimate of the overall 
use of not as a head. Thus, based on the percentages in table 3, we 
can estimate the number of tokens of not as a head of NEGP in 
declarative contexts, just as in table 2. Since not can only be used as 
a head when the competing head ne is absent, this estimate is rele- 
vant just in sentences without ne. Table 4 presents the use of not as 
a head in declarative clauses when ne is absent. 

Frisch: Reanalysis precedes syntactic change: Evidence from Middle English 195 
Table 4: The use of not as a head in declaratives 

with ne 


// e 

time period 





grand total 

1 150-1220 




8 5 










2 35 



1 14 









5.3. The rise of not in the specifier of NEGP 

Table 5 compiles the information from table 2 and table 4. The ad- 
verb uses are taken from table 2, but have been divided into two 
cases, depending on the presence or absence of ne. The head uses 
have been taken from table 4. Table 5 clearly shows that the adverb 
and head estimates do not cover all of the data, and thus there must 
be a third position used by not during Middle English. I claim that 
the remainder of the data are cases of the use of not in the specifier 
of NEGP. In addition, 1 claim that not is used as a sentential negator 
in these cases. 

Table 5: Estimated distribution of the data 

with ne 


// e 

time period 


head spec 
































1 9 











1 14 









1 2 



2 27 






The loss of the adverb position for not occurs regardless of the 
presence or absence of ne.^ This supports the hypothesis that a third 
option, the specifier of NEGP position, is being used by not. If the 
change was one which proceeded directly from the adverb position 
to the head of NEGP position, we would expect the use of not as an 
adverb to remain constant when ne is present, and to fall only when 
ne is absent. Since the use of not as a head is possible only when n e 
is absent, this is the first piece of quantitative evidence that the re- 
analysis of not as a sentential negator is independent of the loss of 

196 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1 994) 

6. An account of the change 

We have seen some evidence that the reanalysis of not occurs inde- 
pendently of the loss of ne. The standard account claims that the re- 
analysis of not is a direct result of the loss of ne. In this section, I 
consider these two hypotheses of the mechanism of the change in 
negation. These hypotheses can be framed in a proposal for economy , 
of projection by Speas (1993). Speas claims that either the head or V 
specifier position of XP must be occupied to license XP in the syntac- 
tic phrase marker. Thus, in the case of sentential negation, either the 
head of NEGP or the specifier of NEGP position must be filled in order 
to license NEGP. 

In section 6.1, I set out the predictions of the standard analysis 
for the change in negators in Middle English. Section 6.2 discusses the 
predictions of a change where the reanalysis of not occurs before the 
loss of ne. Section 6.3 presents the full range of data, and shows that 
the reanalysis of not does precede the loss of ne. Section 6.4 ad- 
dresses a semantic motivation for the change. 

6.1. Standard analysis: Reanalysis follows change 

Under the standard analysis, the original licenser of NEGP, ne, be- 
comes phonologically weak and is lost. In order to preserve the li- 
censing of NEGP under economy of projection, not must be reana- 
lyzed as a NEGP constituent. If this reanalysis follows the loss of ne, 
then both the head of NEGP and the specifier of NEGP positions 
should be available for use by not. 

The standard analysis thus makes two predictions about the 
distribution of the data. First, the standard analysis predicts that the 
use of not in the specifier position and the head position will rise af- 
ter the use of ne drops. Only after ne is lost will the NEGP need to be 
licensed by some other negator. Second, the standard analysis pre- 
dicts that the use of not in the head position will rise at the same 
time as the use of not in the specifier position, as either position will 
be available to license NEGP when ne is gone. 

6.2. My analysis: Reanalysis precedes change 

When not is categorially an adverb, it is not a component of, and 
hence cannot license, NEGP. NEGP is, however, present in the clausal 
structure and is licensed by the negative head ne. Note that there is 
nothing in Speas' approach that rules out redundant licensing of a | 
projection. Hence, not is free to occupy the specifier of NEGP. When 
not is reanalyzed as occupying the specifier of NEGP, ne becomes 
structurally redundant, as it is no longer needed to license NEGP. 
Consequently, ne is lost. Under this approach, only the specifier posi- 
tion is initially available for not. 

This position makes predictions contrary to those of the stan- 
dard view. First, my analysis predicts that the use of not in the 
specifier position will rise before the use of ne drops, as not is reana- 

Frisch: Reanalysis precedes syntactic change: Evidence from Middle English 197 

lyzed as occupying the specifier of NEGP before ne is lost. Second, 

since the use of not as a head can begin only after the competing 

head ne is lost, the use of not as a head rises only after not is used in 
the specifier position. 

6.3. The loss of n e 

The crucial evidence for determining the nature of the change is the 
time course of the loss of ne. Table 6 shows the loss of ne. The loss of 
adverb not, the rise in specifier not, and the rise in head not, from 
table 5, are also provided for comparison. 

Table 6: The 

loss of 

n e 

time p)eriod 




% ne 

% adverb 

% specifier 

% head 

1 150-1220 







7 36 















Table 6 clearly shows that the rise in the use of not in the speci- 
fier position precedes the loss of ne, and also that the rise in the use 
of not in the head position comes only after not is established in the 
specifier position. In particular, the boxed row corresponding to 
1290-1360 shows that the use of ne and the use of the specifier po- 
sition are high during the same time period. In addition, the use of 
the head position only becomes available after a significant drop in 
use of ne and after not is established in the specifier of NEGP. 

Thus, based on the data in table 6, I conclude that the reanalysis 
of not precedes the loss of ne. Consequently, the time course of the 
change is that the specifier of NEGP position is established for not 
while ne is present, then ne becomes optional, and finally, not used 
as a head becomes possible. 

6.4. Motivation for the change 

We have just seen that the reanalysis of not precedes the loss of ne. 
The loss of ne is accounted for as a consequence of the change in the 
syntactic status of not. The change in not can be accounted for syn- 
tactically, as the specifier of NEGP position is open to be used while 
ne is present. There is, however, no apparent motivation for the 
change, as the presence of ne is sufficient to license NEGP and signal 
sentential negation. 

When not is used with ne in early Middle English, it is used as an 
emphatic negator, with meaning similar to "at all". Emphatic terms in 
general are frequently weakened over time (cf. Hock 1986, Horn 
1989). In this case, the use of ne...not changed from meaning "not at 
all" to merely "not". Thus, there was no semantic distinction between 
a sentence with just ne and one which also contained not. This 

198 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

prompted a reanalysis of not from sentential adverb to part of the 
bipartite negator ne...not, which indicated sentential negation as a 
unit. The structurally redundant, semantically redundant, and 
phonologically weak ne was lost soon after, leaving not as the lone 

7. Semantics of ne...not 

In the crucial time period covering 1290-1360, the overwhelming 
form of negation is ne...not. This is parallel to the Standard French 
negator, ne...pas. Both of these cases have ne as the head of NEGP and 
not/pas in the specifier of NEGP. Thus, both negators are in position 
to act as sentential negators. The original descriptive term for this 
situation is negative concord, and in this case, the description is an 
appropriate one. The [negP not [neg ne]] configuration (prior to verb 
movement and cliticization) is the standard SPEC-HEAD agreement 
relation used for inflectional affixes. I claim, then, that the use of 
both negators, ne and not does not result in a double negation inter- 
pretation because of this "negative agreement" relation (cf. the nega- 
tive binding analysis in Shanklin (1990) or the Neg. Criterion in 
Haegeman & Zanuttini (1991) for possible formalizations of negative 
concord which would subsume this case). 

In general, the semantics of negative concord is not well under- 
stood, and I will take this opportunity to point out that the Middle 
English period is an important one for its study. In this paper, a de- 
tailed study of the change in negators in Middle English has been 
presented. This change is not only one from ne negator to not nega- 
tor, but also a change from a negative concord system which used 
ne....not, ne... .nothing and ne... never in addition to ordinary negation 
with ne. Standard Modern English no longer uses negative concord. 
Nothing and never appear without the negator not. Thus, the phe- 
nomena investigated here deserve further study in the investigation 
of negative concord. 

8. Conclusion 

The evidence in this paper demonstrates that the change in negators 
in Middle English is a change in which, contrary to the standard view, 
reanalysis is not forced upon language learners as a result of syntac- 
tic constraints. In this case, the reanalysis of not as a sentential 
negator precedes the loss of the Old English sentential negator, ne, 
creating a redundant system of negation. Ne is later lost from this 
redundant system. 

The study of the change in negators in Middle English has three 
facets of general significance. First, this change is inconsistent with 
the prevailing view that changes are necessary reflexes of grammar, 
driven by structural learnability considerations, which occur after 
variation and competition between forms. In this case change occurs 
after the innovation of a new structural position for not makes n e 
unnecessary. Second, previous structural analyses of verb movement 



Frisch: Reanalysis precedes syntactic change: Evidence from Middle English 199 

in Middle English, the use of not as a sentence adverb in early Middle 
English, the existence of negative concord in Middle English, and the 
invariant use of never in Middle English (cf. for example Kroch 1989, 
Shanklin 1990, Roberts 1993) are supported by the quantitative re- 
sults presented here. In addition, the quantitative study of this phe- 
nomenon has led to additional structural conclusions. The syntactic 
status of not as an adverb, specifier of NEGP, and head of NEGP was 
demonstrated. In addition, the precise time period of the change in 
negators, between 1290 and 1360, was determined. These conclu- 
sions could not have been reached without the detailed, quantitative 
study presented here. 


* I would like to thank Beatrice Santorini for her continuing help 
and support. Thanks also to Hans Henrich Hock and Janet 
Pierrehumbert for comments and discussion of the material in this 
paper. I would finally like to thank the audience at FLSM 5 in gen- 
eral, and Michel DeGraff and Ljiljiane Progovac in particular, for their 
questions and comments. 

' The corpus used in this paper is the Helsinki Corpus of English 
Texts (diachronic part), available from the Norwegian Computing 
Centre for the Humanities, and, deposited by Merja Kyto, Department 
of English, University of Helsinki with the Oxford Text Archive. 

- Tables and numerical data in this paper are presented in the 
following fashion: Numbers which correspond to actual occurrences 
of data are reported exactly. Estimates of the distribution of the data 
will be rounded to the nearest whole number, though all calculations 
are performed to the full precision of Microsoft Excel. Percentages 
are rounded to the nearest percent. Percentages represented as 
decimals and other numbers are given to two decimal places. 

3 The estimated use of adverb not of 5% in the final time period 
(1430-1500) is probably too high, as Kroch (1989) shows that verb 
raising is being lost at this time. Thus, instances of preverbal not may 
instead be the result of a lack of verb raising. In my corpus, both in- 
stances of preverbal not in this time period occurred with lexical 
verbs and not with auxiliaries or modals. Thus, the use of not as an 
adverb in the final time period may be as low as 0%. 

4 The estimated number of adverb instances of not, based on the 
number of preverbal instances of not, is greater than the actual 
number of instances of not in the corpus. Consequently, I take the 
rate of use of adverb not to be 100%. 

5 Note that the low number of instances of not without nc in the 
first two time periods makes the estimate of adverb and specifier not 
unreliable. In both time periods, the expected number of instances of 
preverbal not is less than one, so we do not expect to see any evi- 

200 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

dence to determine whether or not the observed tokens are used in 
the adverb position or the specifier position. 


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Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Janine Graziano-King 
CUNY Graduate School 

This paper explores the nature of raising verbs in Eng- 
lish, focusing on SEEM, and departs from the standard view 
(as in Chomsky 1981). No appeal is made to CP-deletion to 
account for raising phenomena. Instead, it is proposed that 
raising verbs (obligatorily) select AP complements, the 
heads of which may be overt or null. The presence of this 
AP complement, coupled with an analysis of null C^s in the 
spirit of Pesetsky 1991, accounts for much of the phenom- 
ena associated with raising verbs, including their inability to 
assign Case to the subjects of their infinitival embedded 

1. Introduction 

Raising verbs in English are analyzed as being able to govern, 
but not Exceptionally Case Mark (ECM),' the subjects of their infini- 
tival embedded clauses. Raising verbs (such as seem and appear) are 
typically grouped with certain adjectives (such as likely and certain) 
under the rubric of RAISING PREDICATES. 

Data such as (1) through (4) below show that raising predicates 
can take tensed clausal complements but, when the embedded clause 
is infinitival (as in (5) and (6)), the embedded subject must raise to 
the position of subject of the matrix clause (shown in (7) and (8), 

( 1 ) It is likely [that John is late] 

(2) It is likely [John is late] 

(3) It seems [that John is late] 

(4) It seems [John is late] 

(5) *It is likely [John to be late] 

(6) *It seems [John to be late] 

(7) Johnj is likely [tj to be late] 

(8) John; seems [tj to be late] 

Chomsky (1981) accounts for raising of the embedded subject in 
(7) and (8) via a number of stipulations regarding raising predicates. 
First, he assumes that raising predicates do not assign subject the- 
matic roles. Thus IT in (1) through (4) above is analyzed as an 
EXPLETIVE as required by the Extended Projection Principle (EPP). 
Chomsky also stipulates that raising verbs are unable to assign Case, 
thereby motivating movement of the embedded subject to Spec (IP) 
of the matrix clause in order for it to receive Case and be phonolog- 
ically realized. 2 Furthermore, he allows for raising predicates to CP- 

204 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

delete when their embedded clauses are infinitival.^ As such, the 
embedded clauses in (5) through (8) are analyzed as IPs, not CPs. 

But there are a number of problems with such an approach. CP- 
deletion is conceptually troubling"^ as is the stipulation that raising 
verbs do not assign Case. Moreover, there are facts that this approach 
cannot account for. Temporarily ignoring raising adjectives, I turn to 
raising verbs and consider some of the complements they can select. 

2. Raising verb complements 

2.1. Clausal complements 

With respect to clausal complement selection, we saw in (3) and 
(4) that raising verbs can take tensed clausal complements; (6) and 

(8) show that they can only take infinitival clausal complements 
provided that the embedded subject raises. 

2.2. Non-clausal complements: NP, AP and PP 

The ungrammaticality of (9) shows that raising verbs cannot 
take a subjectless NP complement: 

(9) *Johni seems [np tj] 

Nor can they take subjectless AP or PP complements, as shown 
by the ungrammaticality of (10) and (11) (where IT is analyzed as an 

(10) *Itexp seems [^p obvious] 

(11) *Itexp seems [pp in a hurry] 

2.3. Small clause complements 

Raising verbs can, however, take NP complements, as well as AP 
and PP complements, provided these have subjects, i.e. that they are 
small clause constructions such as (12), (13) and (14): 

(12) Johni seems [ap tj [nice]] 

(13) John, seems [np ti [a fool]] 

(14) Johnj seems [pp tj [in a hurry]] 

Data such as (12) through (14) are analyzed in Chomsky 1981 
and Stowell 1981, 1991 as small clause raising constructions. Under 
such an analysis, it is assumed that John has moved from Spec of the 
small clause to Spec (IP) of the matrix clause and receives its 9-role 
from the head of the small clause. ^ 

It would appear, then, that raising verbs must always take 
clausal complements, of some form or other, that express proposi- 
tions. This fact might be captured by a propositional s-selection 

2.4. AP + clausal complements 

Additionally, we see instances where the selected full clauses 
are preceded by adjectives capable of predicating over propositions. 

Graziano-King: Selection properties of raising verbs 205 

Consider, for example, (15): 

(15) It seems [^s^p obvious [^p that John is late]] 

(15), where the adjective intervenes between the raising verb 
and the tensed clause, is fine. If, however, the complement clause is 
infinitival (as in (16)), the embedded subject is unable to raise with 
the AP present even if CP-deletion is assumed to have occurred (as 
shown in (17)): 

(16) *It seems [^p obvious [jp John to be late]] 

(17) *Johni seems [^p tj [^^ obvious [jp tj to be late]]] 

It is not at all clear how the approach to raising verbs described 
above can account for this fact. Assuming that (17) violates the 
Empty Category Principle (ECP), it is not apparent why the adjective 
is unable to properly head-govern the trace. ^ 

This is especially troubling in light of data such as (18) through 
(21) below where CP-deletion could not have occurred. In (18) and 
(19), only a CP complement has been selected; in (20) and (21), the 
verb has selected an AP with a CP complement: 

(18) It seems [^p that John is late] 

(19) *[That John is lateji seems [cp tj] 

(20) It seems [^p obvious [(-p that John is late]] 

(21) [That John is late]; seems [^p ti [^^ obvious [cp tj]]] 

Since (18) is fine, the ungrammaticality of (19) (where the entire 
CP complement raises) is puzzling. "^ Ungrammaticality that results 
from movement suggests an ECP violation. In (19), however, the 
trace in CP should respect the ECP as it is properly head-governed by 
the verb (as well as redundantly antecedent-governed and 9-gov- 
erned, assuming that SEEM 9-marks the embedded clause). Why then 
is (19) out? 

It would appear that the grammaticality of (21) compared to the 
ungrammaticality of (19) could be accounted for, in some way, by the 
presence of the adjective. Since the presence of CP is not in question 
here, an alternative explanation is called for. 

3. The obligatory AP proposal 

3.1. Assumptions 

To recapitulate, it would appear that raising verbs in some way 
select for propositions, either in the form of full clauses or small 
clauses. Focusing on full clauses, (18) suggests that raising verbs may 
take a single CP complement; however, the ungrammaticality of (19) 
suggests that something else is going on. 

I propose that raising verbs obligatorily select AP complements, 
the heads of which may be overt or null. Overt A^s must have the 
property of predicating over propositions and raise at LP to form 
complex predicates with the raising verbs. Null A^s, however, do not 

206 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

In developing this proposal, I abandon the CP-deletion account. 
Instead I will assume that CP complements to AO are headed by a 
null [+ Affix] CO (in the spirit of Pesetsky 1991) and as such, I propose 
that NP traces in embedded Spec (IP) of raising constructions depend 
on incorporation of the null C^ into V^ for proper head-government. I 
will argue that much of the phenomena associated with raising verbs 
(including their inability to Case-mark the subjects of embedded (I 
infinitival clauses) can be shown to follow directly from the interac- ' 
tion between the obligatory A^ (null or overt) and the null [-i-Affix] C^. 

3.2. Some evidence 

However, what evidence here suggests the existence of an AP 
complement to VO headed by a null A^? I think that such an analysis 
can be motivated by the following facts. Focusing on seem, consider 
(22) through (25): 

(22) Johnj seems [^p t, [^ [jp tj to be late]]] 

(23) *Johni seems [cp ti [c that [jp tj to be late]]] 

(24) *Johni seems [^p tj [^^ obvious [^p ti [^ [jp tj to be late]]]]] 

(25) *Johni seems [^p ti [p^- obvious [^p ti [^ that [jp ti to be late]]]]] 

Of these, only (22) is grammatical, suggesting that in (23) 
through (25), the ECP is not satisfied. Under Rizzi's (1991) analysis, 
both null CO (in (22) and (24)) and overt CO (in (23) and (25)) should 
block head-government under minimality. Therefore, the grammati- 
cality of (22) must somehow be explained. 

3.3 Null [+Affix] CO 

I assume that the structures of (22) and (23) can minimally be 
represented as (26) and (27), respectively: 

(26) [jp Johni [yp seems [^p ti [^ [jp ti [to be late]]]]] 

(27) *[ip Johni [vp seems [qp t\ [^ that [jp ti [to be late]]]]]] 

Under Pesetsky's (1991) analysis, null COs may have the feature 
[-1- Affix] or [-Affix]. Pesetsky assumes the following with respect to 
[-t-Affix] null COs: (1) a null [+ Affix] C° must raise and incorporate into 
the verb to satisfy the Stray Affix Filter (SAF);^ (2) incorporation of 
the null CO extends the government domain of the verb to include 
everything that the trace of the incorporated CO governs, (here em- 
bedded Spec (IP)) via Pesetsky's revision of Baker's (1988) Govern- 
ment Transparency Corollary (GTC);^ and, (3) a morpheme that is i 
phonologically null at D-structure is not a governor, lo 

Since (22) (restated as (26)) is good, I assume that the null CO is 

[+ Affix]. Therefore, in (26') below, the null [-i-Affix] CO raises to VO to 

satisfy the SAF, allowing VO to extend its government domain to in- 
clude the NP trace in embedded Spec (IP). 

(26') [jp John, [yp seems-i-Oj [^p ti [q^ tj [jp ti [to be late]]]]]] 

The overt CO in (27), however, does not raise, precluding proper 

Graziano-King: Selection properties of raising verbs 207 

head-government of the NP trace by seem. Note that the presence of 
the overt C^ can account for the ungrammaticality of (25) as well. 

Note also that the overt head of AP appears to be unable to 
properly head-govern the NP trace in (24). This will be discussed in 
Section 3.4. 

Consider now (28) through (31) where the entire embedded CP 

(28) *[cp John is late]i [yp seems [^p tj]] 

(29) *[cp That John is late]i [yp seems [^p ti]] 

(30) *[cp John is lateJi [yp seems [^p tj [^^ obvious [(-p tj]]]] 

(31) [cp That John is late]i [yp seems [^p tj [^^ obvious [^p tj]]]] 

(28) and (30) are analyzed as being introduced by null [+Affix] 
C^s which must incorporate in order to satisfy the SAF. But since they 
are in sentence initial position, they have no available host. As such, 

(28) and (30) violate the SAF. However, no SAF violation occurs in 

(29) or (31). The ungrammaticality of (29), therefore, must still be 
accounted for. 

To summarize, it would appear as if seem can properly head- 
govern the NP trace in (22) but not the CP trace in (29), while 
obvious appears to be able to properly head-govern the CP trace in 

(31) but not the NP trace in (24). 

3.4. Obligatory AP 

Under an obligatory AP analysis, (29), (22), (24), and (31) can be 
represented as (32), (33), (34), and (35), respectively: 

(32) *[cp That John is late]i [yp seems [y»^p tj [p^' [^p tj]]]] 

(33) a. [ip Johni [yp seems Up i\ U' [cp t, [c [jp tj [to be...]]]]]]]] 

b. [jp Johni [yp seems [^p tj [a' 0+Oj [cp tj [^ tj [ip ti [to be...]]]]]]]] 

c. [,p Johni [yp seems-hOj [^p ti [^- Otj [cp ti [^ tj [,p ti [to 


(34) a. *[ip Johui [yp seems [^p ti [^^ obvious [cp ti [c O [jp ti [to 


b. *[ip Johni [vp seems [^p ti [^^ obvious-i-Oj [cp ti [c tj [|p ti 


c. *[ip Johni [yp seems [obvious+Oj]k [ap ti [a' tk [cp ti [c tj [ip tj 


(35) a. [cp That John is late]i [yp seems [ap ti [a' obvious [cp ti]]]] 

b. [cp That John is late]i [yp seems-t-obviousj [ap ti [a' tj [cp ti]]]] 

I assume that null A", being a zero morpheme, can have the fea- 
tures [-i-Affix] or [-Affix]. If null A^ has the feature [-i-Affix], it would 
be able to raise to V", allowing V^' to properly head-govern the CP 
trace via the revised GTC. Since (32) is ungrammatical, I assume that 
AO to VO raising has not occurred; i.e., that null A" is [-Affix].'' 

Yet (33) (which under this analysis contains a [-Affix] null A" 

208 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

and a [+Affix] null C^) is good, suggesting that proper head-govern- 
ment of the NP trace obtains and that the SAF is respected. For the 
SAF to be respected, null C^ must be able to raise through null A^, 
since incorporation into a NULL A^ would not satisfy the SAF. So, null 
CO would raise to A^, as in (33b), then excorporate and again raise to 
incorporate into VO, as in (33c), allowing VO to extend its government 
domain to Spec (IP) of the embedded clause.' 2 

While Rizzi (1991) assumes that government of a subject, and 
hence Case assignment, by a matrix verb, is always blocked across a 
CP due to the intervening C^ (null or overt), Pesetsky (1991) assumes 
that Exceptional Case Marking obtains via incorporation of a null 
[-i-Affix] CO, and is only blocked if C^ is [-Affix]. I am assuming here 
that in (33), Case assignment by a raising verb is blocked by the 
intervening null A^ which is [-Affix]. 

Turning to (34), the null [-i-Affix] C^ should be able to incorporate 
into AO extending its government domain to include embedded Spec 
(IP). However, since (34) is ungrammatical, we must assume that for 
some reason, the overt adjectival head is unable to properly head- 
govern the trace. 

How, then, can the grammaticality of (35), where the adjective 
appears to be properly head-governing the CP trace, be accounted 
for? Following Stowell (1991), I propose that the overt A^ raises to 
VO to form a COMPLEX PREDICATE, as in (35b). As such, it is the complex 
predicate seems obvious and not the adjective obvious, that is prop- 
erly head-governing the NP trace. Why, then, is (34) out? I'd like to 
suggest two possibilities. On the one hand, we could say that, as rep- 
resented in (34b), C^ raises to A^ satisfying the SAF. The amal- 
gamated element [adjective + null C^] now incorporates into V^, as 
shown in (34c). Recall, however, that incorporation extends the gov- 
ernment domain of VO to govern everything that the TRACE OF THE 
INCORPOREE governed. In this case, the incorporee is the amalgamated 
element [adjective -i- null C^] in A^ and not the null element in C^. 
Therefore, head-government is only extended to Spec (CP) and not 
Spec (IP). Alternatively, we could say that A^ raising to V^ may be 
simply be precluded if A^ has already been host to a previous incor- 

4. Small clauses revisited 

In Section 2.3, I assumed the analysis of small clauses presented 
in Chomsky 1981 and Stowell 1981, 1991. However, in proposing 
that raising verbs obligatorily select AP complements, I would hope 
to extend that proposal to an analysis of small clause constructions as 

With respect to full clausal complements, I claim that data such 
as (18) through (21) (repeated here as (36) through (39), respec- 
tively, provide evidence for an intervening AP complement: 

(36) It seems [cp that John is late] 

Graziano-King: Selection properties of raising verbs 209 

(37) *[That John is late]i seems [cp tj] 

(38) It seems [^p obvious [^p that John is late]] 

(39) [That John is late]i seems [ap ti [a' obvious [cp tj]]] 

Although the CP complement can raise when the adjectival head 
is overt, as in (39), this is not the case when what is raising is the 
embedded subject. In cases such as (34) (repeated here as (40)), I 
have claimed that the presence of an overt adjectival head prevents 
raising of the embedded subject by blocking the C^ to VO raising that 
allows proper head-government of the subject trace: 

(40) *[,pJohni [vp seems [ap tj [a' obvious [cp tj [^ [,p tj [to...]]]]]]]] 

As in embedded infinitival clauses, subjects must raise in small 
clause constructions in order to receive Case. Once again, it would ap- 
pear that the presence of an overt adjectival head precludes such 
movement. However, since the small clause is not assumed to be 
headed by a CP, we can't appeal to the inability of C^ to incorporate 
into yo to account for the ungrammaticality of data such as (41): 

(41) *[ipJohni [vp seems [ap tj [a' obvious [ap ti [a- late]]]]]] 

Instead, I assume, following Stowell 1991, that a small clause 
construction undergoes restructuring at LF. The obligatory AP anal- 
ysis would require a D-structure such as (42) which would undergo 
restructuring resulting in (43): 

(42) e [vp seem] [ap [ap [np John] late]] 

(43) e [vp seem+latcj] [ap 0+ti [ap [np John] tj]] 

AO raises to V^ by means of head-to-head adjunction, forming a 
complex predicate. If the A^ heading the small clause must raise to 
V*' in much the same way as C^^ raises to VO in the case of full clauses, 
we can assume that, as in the latter case, null A^'s can be moved 
THROUGH (by means of incorporation and excorporation of the small 
clause head in an effort to form a complex predicate with the raising 
verb) while overt adjectival heads cannot, thereby blocking complex 
predicate formation. 

5. Summary: The obligatory AP proposal 

The proposal outlined here can be briefly summarized as fol- 

A. Raising verbs obligatorily select AP complements: 

i. if AO is null, it has the feature [-Affix]; 

ii. if A^' is overt, it raises to V" at LF forming a complex 

predicate whose government domain extends to include 
everything that the trace of the incorporated A*' gov- 
erns, i.e., a trace in CP, but not in embedded Spec (IP). 

B. A^s may select CP propositional complements: 

i. null CO is [-(-Affix]; 

210 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

ii. proper head-government of an NP trace in embedded 
Spec (IP) only obtains when a null C^ can incorporate 
into VO, extending its government domain; 

iii. null C^ can move through a null A^ to VO since incorpo- 
ration into null A^ would not satisfy the SAF; and, 

iv. incorporation of null C^ into an overt A^ precludes 
proper head-government of a trace in embedded Spec 
(IP). Proper head-government may not obtain due to: 

a) a limit on extension of the government domain of 
yo to government of what the trace of the amal- 
gamated element (overt A^+ null C^) governs; 


b) the inability of the overt A^ to incorporate into 
yo if it has, itself, been host to a previous 

C. A^s may select small clause propositional complements: 

i. null A^s can be moved through, allowing restructuring 

to occur resulting in complex predicate formation; 
ii. overt A^s block complex predicate formation and so 

cannot occur with small clause constructions. 

6. Why AP? 

I have proposed here that an obligatory complement selected by 
the raising verb intervenes between it and the clausal complement, 
accounting for much of the phenomena associated with raising verbs. 
I have further assumed this complement to be an AP as it would ap- 
pear as if the head of this intervening maximal projection must be a 
lexical item that can predicate over propositions. 

However, S. Franks (personal communication) questions the va- 
lidity of identifying this complement as an AP, suggesting that it 
might, for example, be a PP instead. I can think of only a few cases 
where PPs predicate over propositions, and these are idiomatic PPs 
such as the following: 

(44) It seems in the bag that John will win the race. 

(45) It seems in the cards that they will marry. 

M. DeGraff (personal communication) has suggested that the id- 
iomatic nature of these PPs might require them to be reanalyzed as 
adjectives (in the sense of predicating over propositions) at some rel- 
evant level. On this note, he further suggests that NULL A^ might be 
interpreted as the null counterpart to lexical true. 

7. 0-assignment 

This brings us to the problem of 0-role assignment. Raising verbs 
are usually assumed to assign one internal B-role. I have proposed 
here that raising verbs obligatorily select AP complements and, fur- 
thermore, that raising verbs combine with their selected overt A^s to 
form COMPLEX PREDICATES each of which have only one 0-role to assign. 

Graziano-King: Selection properties of raising verbs 211 

Assuming that adjectives also have S-roles to assign, how can we ac- 
count for what appears to be the loss of a S-role in the formation of a 
complex predicate? 

7.1. Raising verbs do not assign 0- roles 

We could consider that raising verbs assign 0-roles to their AP 
complements, but this move would require a radical modification of 
the concept of 9-role that I do not feel is well founded. S. Lappin 
(personal communication) has suggested to me that if, in the spirit of 
Williams 1983, one is prepared to separate the syntactic and seman- 
tic components of L-marking, the raising verb can be seen as assign- 
ing the status of argument phrase to its AP complement without as- 
signing it a semantic role. Williams (1994) describes the relationship 
between the raising verb and its AP complement as a FUNCTION 
COMPOSITION by which the raising verb transmits its complement's 
9-role to its subject. Although Williams is working in a PREDICATION as 
opposed to a RAISING framework, I think the idea of raising verbs as 
functors might be extended to cases where overt A^s raise to V^. In 
other words, overt A^s raise to be in a function relation with the 
verb in order for their G-roles to be assigned. 

This approach raises the question of the status of null A<^s with 
respect to 9-role assignment. The ungrammaticality of (46) suggests 
that null A^s do not have 0-roles to assign since it is assumed that a 
small clause subject receives its 9-role from the head of the small 

(46) *[ipJohni [vpseems Upti U'O]]]] 

However, if neither raising verbs nor null A^s assign 9-roles, 
how is the clause 0-marked in (47)? 

(47) It seems [^pO [(-pJohn is late]] 

7.2. Propositional adjectives do not assign 0-roles 

It could be the case that adjectives that predicate over propo- 
sitions do not assign 0-roles. However, I will not pursue this here, but 
merely suggest it as a possible analysis. 

7.3. Complex predicates = conflation of 9-roles 

In lieu of distinguishing propositional adjectives by their inabil- 
ity to assign 0-roles, M. DeGraff (personal communication) has sug- 
gested the possibility that complex predicate formation results in the 
conflation of two 0-roles into one. At present, the mechanics of such 
an approach remain to be worked out. One can speculate, however, 
that raising verbs do assign 0-roles and that the 0-role of the overt 
AP head is somehow absorbed in complex predicate formation. Under 
such an account, a null AP head (having only a syntactic role to play) 
would not have to assign a 0-role as the 0-role assigned by the 
raising verb would suffice. 

212 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

8. Raising adjectives 

In this discussion of raising verbs, I have proposed an alter- 
native to CP-deletion I now consider whether this proposal can be 
extended to raising adjectives as well and account for the contrast 
between (34), repeated here as (48), and (49): 

(48) *Johni seems [^ptj [^obvious [cpti [c'O [ipti to be late]]]]] 

(49) Johnj seems [^s^ptj [^likely [^pti [c'O [jpt; to be late]]]]] 

I have already considered two possibilities for ruling out (46). 
Either the government domain of V^ cannot be extended as far as the 
trace in embedded Spec (IP), OR A^ can't incorporate into the verb 
once it's been the host of a previous incorporation. We then have two 
possible accounts for the grammaticality of (47). If raising adjectives 
do not raise to VO to form complex predicates, proper-head govern- 
ment of the trace in Spec (IP) could obtain via C^ raising to A^. Alter- 
natively, we could assume that raising adjectives are somehow able 
to raise to VO despite having already served as host to a previous in- 
corporation. At present, I have no grounds to select one analysis over 
the other, but offer both as possibilities. 

9. Conclusion 

In conclusion, I have tried to show that by postulating obligatory 
AP complements for raising verbs, and by assuming that in raising 
constructions CP complements are headed by null [-i-Affix] C^s, much 
of the phenomena associated with raising verbs follows from the in- 
teraction between A^s (overt and null) and null C^s, thereby pre- 
cluding a need for CP-deletion. Furthermore, the inability of raising 
verbs to assign Case need not be stipulated as Case assignment would 
be blocked by the intervening A^. While questions regarding 0-as- 
signment remain to be worked out, I think such an approach is 
conceptually preferable and empirically motivated. 


* This paper benefited greatly from discussions with S. Franks, R. 
Kayne, S. Lappin, J. Nuiiez, F. Ordonez, I. Stefanescu, M. Suzuki, and S. 
Utakis. Very special thanks are due to M. DeGraff who showed me 
how to get from Brooklyn to Illinois and to F. Gulinello who co- 

1 Exceptional Case Marking allows a matrix verb to assign ac- 
cusative Case to the subject of its infinitival complement clause. 

2 These two stipulations — the inability to assign subject thematic 
roles and the inability to assign accusative Case — are captured by 
Burzio (1986:178) in Burzio's Generalization: '...all and only the verbs 
that can assign 0-role to the subject and assign (accusative) Case to 
an object.' However, while this generalization may be descriptively 
accurate, it seems to lack explanatory power. 

Graziano-King: Selection properties of raising verbs 213 

3 Although Chomsky (1981) was not working in the framework 
of X-bar Theory, I follow Pesetsky (1991) in describing S-bar dele- 
tion in terms of its X-bar counterpart, CP-deletion. 

4 Pesetsky (1991:130) describes CP-deletion as '...dubious be- 
cause it is an isolate in the LGB system.' 

5 Williams (1983), on the other hand, eschews the small clause 
analysis and instead analyzes examples such as (12) in terms of his 
theory of PREDICATION, giving (12) the following D-structure: 

(i) Johuj [seemso [latei]APi]vpi 

Under Williams' analysis, John is base generated in Spec (IP) and 
co-indexed with the predicate. However, even under this analysis, 
John receives its 6-role from the adjectival head. 

^ I assume here Rizzi's (1991:74) conjunctive formulation of the 
ECP: A nonpronominal empty category must be 

(i) properly head-governed (Formal Licensing) 

(ii) Theta-governed or antecedent-governed (Identification). 

^ I am assuming here that the CP complement raises into Spec 
(IP) of the matrix clause, i.e., subject position, but see Koster 1978 for 
arguments against this view. 

8 The Stray Affix Filter: *X if X is a lexical item whose morpho- 
logical subcategorization frame is not satisfied at S-structure. 
(Pesetsky 1991:167, attributed to Lasnik 1981) 

9 The Government Transparency Corollary: A category which has 
an item incorporated into it governs everything which the incor- 
porated item governed in its original structural position (Baker 

'0 According to Pesetsky (1991:153), 'An X which is phono- 
logically null at D-structure (i.e. a zero morpheme) is not a governor.' 
Pesetsky's (1991) revision (the TRACE version) allows the trace of the 
incorporated item to have a government domain (which, via incorpo- 
ration, extends the host's government domain) even if the incor- 
porated item, prior to incorporation, was not a governor (i.e., was a 
zero morpheme). 

' ' It seems to me that a zero morpheme that is not marked 
|-t-Affix] can be construed as being either marked as [-Affix] or simply 
unmarked for the feature. In the present discussion, nothing hangs 
on this distinction. 

'2 Note that under this analysis, the embedded subject must 
raise through Spec (CP), Spec (AP) and Spec (VP) on its way to Spec 
(IP) of the matrix clause. This constitutes improper movement, as de- 
scribed in May 1985, as the NP moves to an A-bar and then back to 
an A position. However, J. Nufiez (personal communication) notes that 
if the incorporation of C" into V" allows the trace of C" to inherit 

214 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

properties of the host. Spec (CP) might be analyzed as being an A 
position, given Spec-head agreement. 


Baker, Mark. 1988. Incorporation. Chicago: University of Chicago 

BURZIO, Luigi. 1986. Italian syntax. Dordrecht: Reidel. 

Chomsky, Noam. 1981. Lectures on government and binding. Dor- 
drecht: Foris. 

KOSTER, Jan. 1978. Why subject sentences don't exist. Recent trans- 
formational studies in European languages, ed. by S. J. Keyser, 
53-64. Cambridge: MIT Press. 

LasNIK, Howard. 1981. Restricting the theory of transformations. 
Explanation in linguistics: The logical problem of language acqui- 
sition, ed. by N. Hornstein & D. Lightfoot, 152-173. London: 

May, Robert. 1985. Logical form: Its structure and derivation. Cam- 
bridge: MIT Press. 

Pesetsky, David. 1991. Zero syntax. Department of Linguistics and 
Philosophy, MIT, MS. 

RIZZI, L. 1991. Relativized minimality. Cambridge: MIT Press. 

StoWELL, Tim. 1981. Origins of phrase structure. MIT Ph.D. disser- 
tation in Linguistics. 

1991. Small clause restructuring. Principles and parameters in 

comparative grammar, ed. by R. Freidin, 182-218. Cambridge: 
MIT Press. 

Williams, Edwin. 1983. Against small clauses. Linguistic Inquiry 

. 1994. Thematic structure in syntax. Cambridge: MIT Press. 

Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 



Georgia M. Green 
University of Illinois 

One of the design considerations for HPSG is the inte- 
gration of pragmatic information with grammatical and 
semantic information. This paper describes how the current 
framework might be adapted to reflect a general theory of 
pragmatics, and at the same time, enable more accurate ac- 
counts of pragmatic constraints on linguistic forms within 
HPSG. After fixing the denotations for some necessary ter- 
minology, I describe and elaborate some proposals that are 
incompletely sketched in the initial expositions of HPSG 
(Pollard & Sag 1987, 1994). I then demonstrate how two 
familiar pragmatic constraints on the use of lexical items 
(so-called extended reference, and Japanese empathy-sen- 
sitive verbs) can be represented more completely and more 
accurately. The paper concludes with a discussion of what is 
required to represent pragmatic conditions associated with 
particular syntactic constructions. 

1 Some background 

This paper is about constraints on the felicitous utterance of 
signs. A sign is an abstract, structured object with phonological, syn- 
tactic, semantic, and contextual attributes — like a word or a phrase. 
An utterance event is what Austin (1962) called a LOCUTIONARY ACT, 
encompassing, to paraphrase Austin (1962:92-93), making some 
noise' that is intended to be recognized as belonging to a certain vo- 
cabulary and conforming to a certain grammar, and as having a cer- 
tain intended sense and reference. An act of uttering a particular 
sign X is then an act of producing a noise that corresponds to the 
phonological attribute of that sign, with the intent that the product of 
that act be understood as intended to have syntactic, semantic, and 
contextual properties that correspond to the respective attributes of 
that sign. Thus, by utterance I will mean utterance as (sincere, 
communicative) use, not utterance as mention. 2 

Just as grammars limit the possible expressions of a language to 
those that satisfy certain constraints (including constraints on rela- 
tions among details of the internal structure of those forms), cultures 
associated with languages impose conditions on the felicitous USE of 
those expressions, limiting felicitous use to those contexts which 
satisfy certain constraints. The felicitous utterance of signs is thus 

216 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

the subject matter of pragmatics, and the constraints that linguists 
propose are its nuts and bolts and I-beams. 

In HPSG, signs are modelled as completely specified sorted fea- 
ture structures (Pollard & Sag 1994:8, 17-18; Shieber 1986, Pollard & 
Moshier 1990, Carpenter 1992). 3 The linguistic rules that constitute a 
grammar are formulated as constraints on the values of attributes 
defined for various classes of linguistic objects. They are represented 
in Attribute-Value-Matrices (AVMs) like (I) below, where values are 
written to the right of the names of the attributes they are values of. 
For perspicuity, sometimes values are labeled with the name (in 
italics) of the sort that structures their content. An appropriate use- 
utterance of a linguistic object must correspond to one or more of 
these formal objects in that a description of its properties must unify 
with the description of theirs. 

2 The character of contextual constraints in HPSG 

In general, contextual constraints on the appropriate use of a 
linguistic expression are represented in the value of the attribute 
CONTEXT. This value is of sort context, and has in turn an attribute 
CONTEXTUAL-INDICES (abbreviated C-INDS), whose values indicate the 
contextual anchors for an utterance (pointers to speaker, addressee, 
time of utterance, location of utterance, and so on). CONTEXTUAL- 
INDICES is always an attribute of contexts, but, for legibility, is sup- 
pressed in diagrams where it does not figure in any constraint. 
Contexts also include background assumptions, essentially presuppo- 
sitions, which are represented as a set of (possibly open) proposi- 
tions. These are called "psoas" in HPSG, for Parameterized-States-of- 
Affairs, with appropriate argument values declared independently 
for various subsorts (1994:338). The label on the sort description 
supplies the type of relationship among the values for the roles 
which are the attributes of the sort, as illustrated in Fig. I (next 
page),'* which represents the constraint that use of the proper noun 
John is appropriate only when the intended referent of a particular 
third person singular index is named John. (The BACKGROUND psoa 
with the label "naming" identifies the relation between a name and a 
bearer. For legibility, I have left out syntactic information, which is 
irrelevant to what is at issue here. The CONTENT representation of 
nominals will be discussed shortly.) 

The BACKGROUND value would include assumptions about social 
relations of the sort that affects pronoun choice, as well as presup- 
positions of uniqueness or factuality associated with particular lexical 
items, as in Fig. II (next page), for English regret. 

In Fig. II, the subject of regret is represented as the first item on 
the SUBCAT list, and the subscript [1] on it matches the value of the 
EXPERIENCER attribute in regret's CONTENT value. This represents 
the constraint that the subject of regret is the regretter. The fact that 
the CONTENT of the state of affairs that is regretted is the same as 

Green: The structure of CONTEXT 
























Figure I: Partial representation of lexical entry for a 
proper name according to Pollard & Sag (1994) 

PHON /riygret/ 








Figure II: Partial lexical entry for a factive verb, 
in the style of Pollard & Sag (1994) 

the BACKGROUND proposition in the CONTEXT represents the con- 
straint that the complement of is presupposed to be true. 

Thus, in general, pragmatic constraints are represented in avail- 
able articulations of HPSG as a set of BACKGROUND propositions, 
which can in principle be about anything at all, but typically are 
about entities and events mentioned in the description of the seman- 
tic content of the sign. There is one exception, however. The con- 
straint that the referent of a common noun be an instance of the 
class referenced by the noun is part of the CONTENT of the noun, not 
the CONTEXT. The representation of referential NPs calls for a CON- 
TENT value which has, in addition to an INDEX specifying values for 
grammatical person, number, and gender features, a RESTRICTION 
attribute whose values are 

interpreted as placing semantic conditions on the entities 
that the indices appearing in them can be anchored to in a 
given context (or range over, in case an index is quantified). 
(Pollard & Sag 1994:26) 

Fig. Ill (next page), for the meaning of book, is representative. 

It is not entirely clear what it would mean for there to be SEMANTIC 
conditions on the unconstrained entities that populate a (model of a) 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 








Figure III: A CONTENT value, after 
Pollard & Sag (1994) (1994: 26) 

world, but Pollard & Sag explain their intentions, with regard to a 
representation like Fig. Ill, as follows: 

The significance of the RESTRICTION value is that when the 
word book is used referentially (e.g. in a referential use of 
the phrase a book), the index [1] introduced by that use 
must be anchored to an entity which renders each psoa in 
the set (in this case, a single psoa) factual; that is, the index 
must be anchored to a book. (1994:26) 

3 Some inadequacies in the current treatment 

3.1 Indexes and anchors 

The constraints on the intended referents of nominal expressions 
(whether in BACKGROUND or in CONTENT) have been represented as 
constraints on indexes. But indexes are defined (1994:24-26) to be 
abstract LINGUISTIC objects (with attributes only for person, number, 
and gender), so it is a category error to say that indexes are con- 
strained to instantiate such relations as 'dog' or 'book', or to be 
named John, that is, to be dogs or books, or be named John'. It is 
clear that the intent is to constrain the anchors of those indexes in 
such ways. For example. Pollard & Sag describe the BACKGROUND 
value in Fig. I as corresponding 

to the presupposition that the referent of a use of the name 
John be named John, or, to be somewhat more precise, that 
the referent be identifiable in the utterance context by 
means of the name John. (1994:27) 

This is an improvement on what Fig. I appears to say, since it is easy 
to show that the relevant relation is neither 'naming' nor 'calling', be- 
cause both would make sentences like (la) and (lb) contradictions, 
which they are not. M 

( 1 ) a. Haj Ross is not named Haj Ross. 

b. John Robert Ross is not called John Robert Ross. 

Two problems remain. First of all, empirically this is a halfway mea- 
sure. It does not indicate by whom the referent is to be identifiable, 
or according to whom the referent is supposed to be identifiable by 
that person. 

Second, nothing in either the BACKGROUND representations or 
the representations of RESTRICTION values requires the interpreta- 

Green: The structure of CONTEXT 219 

tion that Pollard & Sag suggest, and it is hard to see how a model- 
theoretic interpretation of this could be made consistent with the 
rest of the theory. The gist of the interpretation quoted is that while 
indexes are just person, number, and gender-class information asso- 
ciated with a linguistic expression, a constraint of the sort in the 
BACKGROUND value in Fig. I constrains not the index [1], but the en- 
tity to which it is anchored, to be the bearer of the name John. The 
formal interpretation of this must be context-sensitive in that when 
an index is a value of the attribute INDEX, it represents person, num- 
ber, and gender information, but when a referential index is the 
value of some role name in a psoa, it represents the entity to which 
that grammatical information is anchored. 5 

3.2 The domain of BACKGROUND propositions; names and 
factive verbs 

The examples of BACKGROUND psoas that Pollard & Sag provide 
invite the inference that they constrain objective properties of the 
context. This inference is supported by such claims as: 

...BACKGROUND psoas are not part of the CONTENT value but 
should rather be considered as felicity conditions on the utter- 
ance context. (1994:27) 

...we...will treat honorification via constraints on when the 
speaker owes honor to the referent of the subject. (1994:93) 

Quite likely, such characterizations are a response to accumulating 
evidence that certain aspects of linguistic form correlate with dif- 
ferent kinds of facts about the situations in which those forms are 
appropriately used. Nonetheless, it cannot be right to say that objec- 
tive facts of the sorts provided in the examples constrain utterance 
contexts. For example, taken at face value, a representation of proper 
nouns as NPs with CONTEXTIBACKGROUND values as in Fig. I above 
predicts that reference to an individual by a name that is not their 
name is incorrect or impossible. But any N' can be used as a proper 
name in context without supposing any formal or customary naming 
relation, as shown in (2). 

(2) A nurse glanced up from her paperwork through bifocal 
glasses. "Just a minute," Bifocals said. "You're supposed to 
be in traction." 

(adapted from People of Darkness, by Tony Hillcrman 
(Perennial Library, Harper and Row, 1988, p. 139)) 

This has implications for the proper treatment of reference in gen- 
eral, which I take up shortly. 

Of course, it is nonsensical to think of either linguistic signs or 
utterances of them as actually limiting the world (in the form of 
contexts in which the signs might happen to be uttered), and in gen- 
eral, it is empirically incorrect to treat BACKGROUND propositions as 
propositions about the objective world in which the sign is used. It is 
(since Morgan 1973) trivial to show that the relevant background 

220 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

propositions are not about objective aspects of any world, but rather 
are propositions about beliefs which the speaker supposes to be 

For example, factive verbs are said to normally presuppose their 
complements. If this means that the proposition corresponding to the 
complement has to be true of the context of utterance for a factive 
verb sentence to be felicitous, then when that proposition is false of 
IT IS FALSE, such sentences ought to be infelicitous. This prediction 
wrong. For example, it predicts incorrectly that if it was the case that 
french fries were actually healthful, but no one knew it, everyone 
would still find it perfectly acceptable to say things like (3). 

(3) Clinton realizes french fries are bad for him. 

3.3 Common nouns and names 

From the description of the RESTRICTION attribute of the 
CONTENT values for nominal objects quoted above, it is clear that re- 
strictions on indices are pragmatic in character. The passage cited 
above not only refers (three times) to the USE of an expression, it in- 
vokes the notion 'intended referent' in referring to the entity to 
which the expression's index is anchored. This is necessarily some- 
thing that is contextually determined (rather than grammatically or 
semantically determined), because its identification depends as much 
on the speaker's intention to refer to THAT entity as on the words she 
chose. Without information about what entity the speaker intended 
the index to be anchored to, the utterance of a sign containing an in- 
dex cannot be evaluated, in the sense that its well-formedness in 
context cannot be determined. But if information about the identi- 
fiability of an intended referent of the use of a sign under a given 
description is pragmatic when the sign is a name, then that same sort 
of information is pragmatic when the sign is a common noun. It is the 
goal of the next section to show that treating both as involving 
BACKGROUND propositions, following Grice (1957), Kripke (1972) and 
Nunberg (1978), has the added attraction of suggesting a means for 
representing the regularities of transferred reference which reflects 
Nunberg's (1978) insights about polysemy. 

4 Towards a fuller account of reference 

All reference involves mutual beliefs about normal beliefs about 
what things are called by what names in which sub-communities, 
and about metaphor-like techniques for extending the usual domain 
of reference of a term to entities functionally related to entities in 
that domain. The aspects of situations that figure in restricting when 
a form is appropriately used all refer, at bottom, to conditions on 
attitudes (typically beliefs and intentions) of speech act participants 
and role-bearers (typically, agents and experiencers) in referenced 
state and event relations. 

/e y 

IS \ 

Green : The structure of CONTEXT 2 2 1 

A more accurate account of the contextual condition on the use 
of proper names than that in Fig. I would refer to the speaker's belief 
described in (IV). 

IV. Condition on felicitous use of a name X: The speaker believes that 
the addressee will be able to identify the intended referent FROM 
the reference to it by that name and will believe that the 
speaker intended him to do so by recognizing that belief of the 

But since (IV) reflects a general condition on the use of referring ex- 
pressions (Grice 1957), it shouldn't have to be represented as part of 
the grammar or lexicon, but should follow from the fact that lan- 
guage is used in accordance with a Cooperative Principle (Grice 1975, 
Green 1993a) which entails that general condition. 6 Perhaps all that 
has to be said with reference to particular proper names is that an 
entity anchored to the index the name introduces is being called by 
the proper name uttered. 

Up to now, we have not addressed the well-known fact that the 
"restrictions" assigning indexes of common (and proper) nouns to 
entities of particular sorts are not linguistically constrained. That is, 
as language users, we are free to use any word to refer to anything 
at all, subject only to the purely pragmatic constraint that we have to 
consider how likely it is that our intended audience will be able to 
correctly identify our intended referent from our use of the expres- 
sion we choose. We frequently exploit this freedom, referring to 
movies as turkeys, cars as lemons, and individuals in terms of objects 
associated with them, as when we say that the flute had to leave to 
attend his son's soccer game, or that the corned beef spilled his wa- 
ter. Yet we all ACT as if we believe, and believe that everyone else 
believes, that individual words differentially constrain the mapping 
from index to anchor. 

We can represent such "normal" word meanings in terms of 
mutual belief in a normal belief about referential expressions, ^ fol- 
lowing Nunberg (1978). The relation mutually-helieve (abbreviated 
mbelieve) is a familiar relation that holds among two sentient beings 
(let us call them an experiencer and a standard) and a proposition. 
Mutual belief does not involve perfect mutual knowledge, but rather 
the recursive relation of the experiencer believing the proposition, 
believing that the standard believes the proposition, believing that 
the standard believes that the experiencer believes the proposition, 
and so on (Cf. Cohen & Levesque 1990). The relation normally- 
believe (abbreviated nhelieve) holds of a community and a propo- 
sition P when people in that community believe that it is normal in 
that community to believe P and that everyone in that community 
believes that. Figure V illustrates representing the meaning of dog in 
terms of a mutual belief that English speakers normally believe that 
dog will refer to dogs. 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

PHON /dog/ 



spKR m 






EXPR English speakers 


cams'- J 


Figure V: Partial lexical entry for a common noun, 
following Nunberg (1978) (naive version) 

Fig. V says, roughly, that when you use the word dog to refer to 
something, you take it for granted that people will take you to be 
referring to a dog. In saying this, it makes the treatment of common 
nouns quite parallel to that of proper names (cf. Kripke 1972, Green 
1984, 1993b). 

Some uses of referential expressions are not so much abnormal 
or less normal as they are normal in a more narrowly defined com- 
munity. Their representations will reflect this difference, as well as 
their relations to less remarkable uses, which can be described in 
terms of fairly simple functions. ^ For example, milkshake as used in 
(4) might have a representation like that in Fig. VI (next page), 
where in addition to a mutual belief about what English speakers 
normally use milkshake to refer to, there is a mutual belief that it is 
normal for sales agents to use a description of a purchase to refer to 
the purchaser, as well as a mutual belief that the person identified as 
the plaintiff bought a milkshake. 

(4) The milkshake claims you kicked her purse. 

5 Representing constraints on the utterance of signs 

An interesting property of these conditions on the referential 
use of expressions which is not represented so far is that they seem 
to require reference to properties of the expressions themselves. For 
example, just as it is the intentions accompanying the UTTERING of an , 
expression that make it a warning, not any property of or condition f 
on the expression itself, the general pragmatic condition on using a 
nominal expression to refer to some intended referent is not that the 
index of that expression have a certain name or instantiate a certain 
category. That doesn't make any sense, since an index is just person, 
number, and gender information associated with a USE of a nominal 
expression. The general condition is rather that the speaker believe 
that the addressee will recognize the speaker's intention in USING the 
expression that its index be taken to be anchored to that intended 

Green: The structure of CONTEXT 


PHON /milkseyk/ 







BKD { 


EXPR English speakers 

milklhake'- ^ 

EXPR sales agents 









Figure VI: Representation'^ for a transferred reference, 
following Nunberg (1978) (preliminary version) 

referent. '0 Figs. V and VI do not reflect this; Fig. V actually refers to 
English speakers normally believing that the index of the entity that 
the speaker is using the word dog to refer to is a dog. 

Insofar as the structure-sharing capacity of HPSG ("the central 
explanatory mechanism" (1994:19)) allows the same feature struc- 
ture to be the value of different attributes within a sign, it is possible 
to represent properties of the utterance act itself among the BACK- 
GROUND psoas by invoking the general HPSG sort sign as the value of 
a role-attribute like INSTRUMENT or UTTERANCE in an instrumental 
psoa." In the case of normal word meaning, all that is needed is to 
add to the CONTEXTIBACKGROUND set a proposition relating to inten- 
tions accompanying utterance of a sign which shares certain 
properties with the sign actually uttered, as shown in Fig. VII (next 

This representation replaces the (bizarre) constraint that it is 
normally believed that the index anchored to the intended referent 
is a dog, with the constraint that it is normally believed that uttering 
the noun dog indicates intent to refer to an object which is a dog. The 
information that the actual anchor of the index [1] is a dog is then 
treated as a conversational implicature from this information. 

This analysis requires adding to the HPSG ontology of objects 
only one new object type: referent. Referents are defined as having 
two attributes, INSTANCE (which takes any sort of object in the uni- 
verse as its value (i.e., it is a completely free variable), and the 
RESTRICTION attribute which was formerly defined for nominal- 
objects. RESTRICTION continues to have sets of propositions (psoas) 
as its value, and they can now legitimately restrict the class to which 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

PHON H/dog/ 



spKR m 


EXPR [2] 

EXPR English speakers 








INST (7] 

PR { INST (ll } 

Figure VII: Lexical entry for a common noun, 
following Nunberg (1978) (closer approximation) 

the anchor may belong. Since this analysis doesn't constrain indexes 
at all, but rather the class of entities to which they might be an- 
chored, RESTRICTION is no longer declared for nominal-objects. 

The representation of transferred reference uses is refined 
similarly, as shown in Fig. VIII (next page).' 2 

6 Empathy verbs 

Empathy-sensitive lexical items (words whose use reflects the 
speaker's degree of association with various participants and the 
relative social rank of participants) may now be seen as unexcep- 
tional. The constraints on them differ from other pragmatic con- 
straints only in the particular relations invoked. Suppose the condi- 
tions on empathy verbs involve something like 'the anchor of this in- 
dex bears such-and-such social or emotional relation to the anchor of 
that index.' For example, yaru is one of several Japanese verbs which 
refers to the 'giving' relation. It is used when the giver is associated 
with the speaker, and ranks higher socially than the recipient (so 
that it is typically appropriate to use it in saying 'my father gave that 
boy a yo-yo' but not in saying 'the beggar gave me a paper flower'). 
In any case, empathy is not measured between words, but rather 
between their referents. Thus, a particular empathy-sensitive verb is 
selected by an utterer (by act of will), to index the intended 
referents of words in accordance with particular social goals. It is not 

Green: The structure of CONTEXT 


piioN B/milkseyk/ 




IKtJ { 


SPKR [2] 
ADDR [3] 


STD m 

EXPR English speakers 



AGENT [2] 




NST d]]} 

EXPR sa/es agents 








Figure VIII: Representation for a transferred reference, 
following Nunberg (1978) 

ungrammatical to use yarn to describe a gift from a socially lower 
person, although it will implicate that the referent is not socially 
lower than the recipient. 

At any rate, the condition is not strictly that the giver actually 
be associated with the speaker, or the recipient socially lower. The 
reflection of such social relations is a CONVERSATIONAL implicature of 
saying something, the saying of which presupposes that the speaker 
believes that the various conditions are met. '3 For concreteness' 
sake. Fig. IX illustrates the condition on the use of the verb yarn. 
described above (next page). 

Note that it is not necessary to REPRESENT the speaker's intent 
that uttering the form will cause the addressee to believe that the 
speaker intends the addressee to believe the propositions in the 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

PHON /yaru/ 











IN d] 







Figure IX: Partial representation of the 
constraints on a verb of giving 

form's BACKGROUND value; the Cooperative Principle guarantees that 
on hearing the speaker utter some expression, the addressee will at- 
tribute intentions to the speaker in doing so, and they will include 
the intention to represent herself as believing the propositions re- 
quired for the felicitous utterance of that expression. Because the use 
of such forms reflects beliefs about the speaker's association with 
participants which the speaker believes to be mutual, it will induce 
inferences when those beliefs are not in fact mutually held. 

7 Constraints on constructions 

All of the pragmatic constraints on forms (constraints on the use 
of forms) discussed so far have affected individual words or mor- 
phemes. Yet it has long been noted (e.g., Davison 1980, Borkin 1974, 
Prince 1978, Green 1981) that the use of syntactic construction types 
may also be constrained by speakers' assumptions about referents 
and their relations to each other, to speech act participants, and to 
properties of assumed worlds. For instance, Davison (1978) and oth- 
ers have observed that the use of passive constructions may imply 
that the passive subject is affected for good or ill by the event refer- 
enced by the passive verb. The use of raising-to-object constructions 
in English has been observed (Borkin 1974, Postal 1974) to be asso- 
ciated with an assumption that (roughly put) the referent of the 
subject (could) perceive the state of affairs involving the referent of 
the object through direct interaction with that individual. The use of 
focus constructions of various sorts (e.g. clefts, pseudo-clefts (Prince 
1978), argument preposing (Ward 1985)) reflects assumptions about 

Green: The structure of CONTEXT 


the relation of the referent of the focused element to an appreciation 
of the state of affairs in which it figures. 

There are two ways in which CONTEXT specifications can be as- 
sociated with constructions in the framework being considered. First, 
if the construction is described by means of a lexical rule which spec- 
ifies one set of constraints in terms of another, the contextual con- 
straints can be included as part of the "derived" lexical entries. Thus, 
an affective passive lexical rule might look something like the func- 
tion represented in Fig. X.'^ 

iiKAi) verb 

SlIDCAT { TV/^, NP^ ) 


SUBCAT ( NP^, ..., (PP^) ) 





EXPR [2] 
SOA [2 

Figure X: Skeleton of a passive lexical rule for an affective passive 

Focus Inversions (Birner 1992) would seem to be amenable to simi- 
lar treatment (cf. Levine 1989, Green 1993c). 

Not all constructions are described by lexical rules, of course. 
Raising-to-object verbs, for instance, are just the subtype of transi- 
tive verb which seeks for its object whatever its VP complement 
subcategorizes for. Insofar as raising-to-object verbs thereby define 
a subsort of transitive verbs, which are a subsort of verbs, the 
CONTEXT specifications can be described as part of the sort definition 
in the description of the lexical type hierarchy for verbs (cf. Pollard 
& Sag 1987:191-218). At the termini of such type hierarchies are 
individual lexical entries with non-disjunctive specifications; words 
with multiple subcategorizations, for instance, will occur at multiple 
terminals, each with a different specification. The verb be, to take an 
extreme example, will have different subcategorizations for its use in 
clefts, pseudo-clefts, property predications, identity predications, etc. 
Different CONTEXT constraints can be described along with the differ- 
ent subcategorization constraints as needed. 

It appears, then, that the means for representing contextual 
constraints on constructions are built into HPSG, in the form of the 
basic multiple-inheritance lexical type hierarchy and the lexical rules 
which instantiate grammars.' 5 

228 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2(1 994) 

8 Conclusion and prospects 

I hope to have demonstrated that it is possible, within the 
framework provided by HPSG for representing information about 
linguistic signs (and their use), to describe pragmatic constraints on 
forms at whatever level of detail is empirically necessary, without ad 
hoc SYNTACTIC features or auxiliary components or modules. Contex- 
tual information is necessarily a part of the representation of first 
and second person indexicals common to all languages, and to the 
representation of reference. The framework HPSG provides for de- 
scribing those aspects of the relation between linguistic form and 
language use does not need to be distorted to describe more subtle 
contextual constraints. At the very least, I believe I have shown (by 
example, if nothing else) that this framework provides a means for 
articulating pragmatic constraints in such a way as to encourage their 
empirical investigation. That alone is a contribution to our under- 
standing of them. 

It would simplify matters if we could remove all mention of be- 
liefs and intentions to an extralinguistic account of language behavior 
as just intentional action. Unfortunately, I do not see at the present 
time how this could be done. First, distinct references to mutual be- 
lief and reflexive intentions appear to be necessary because some- 
times one is invoked and sometimes the other. Particular kinds of in- 
tentions are part of the description of particular illocutionary forces 
and intended perlocutionary effects, but the description of lexical 
elements and constructions involves invoking mutual beliefs. 

Second, insofar as there are regularities in the invocation of be- 
liefs and intentions, factoring them out will depend on having a fully 
explicit theory of their projection. Since the projection of pre- 
suppositions in particular (and probably of propositions about con- 
texts, generally) is in part dependent on conversational implicature 
(Morgan 1973, Gazdar 1979), and since conversational implicature is 
a function of a general theory of intentional behavior and its inter- 
pretation (Grice 1975), not something specifically linguistic, a theory 
of the projection of background propositions would seem to be just 
the linguistic subcase of a more general theory of the interpretation 
of human behavior. In any case, it is a topic for another time, prob- 
ably a rather long time. 


* This work was supported in part by the Beckman Institute for 
Advanced Science and Technology at the University of Illinois at 
Urbana-Champaign. The comments of Jerry Morgan, Andreas Kathol, 
Lynne Murphy and Tsuneko Nakazawa on earlier drafts have made 
this a better paper than it might otherwise have been. 

Green: The structure of CONTEXT 229 

' Noise being a technical term referring indifferently to what- 
ever medium is employed, whether speech, gesture, writing, or 
something else. 

2 E.g., citation, recitation. Perhaps the proper treatment of men- 
tion is as a specialized subtype of use, but that cannot be resolved 

3 In fact, as totally well-typed and sort-resolved feature struc- 

4 For the sake of readability, AVMs in this paper routinely sup- 
press information that is irrelevant to the purposes of the discussion, 
and readily reconstructible by a sympathetic reader who is familiar 
with the ontology of sorts in Pollard and Sag (1994) (e.g., sorts and 
complete path specifications where only the terminal information is 
made explicit). 

5 The option of saying that indexes have person, number, and 
gender class attributes AND refer to their anchors would seem to 
claim, contrary to experience, that the property of being named John 
(or being a dog) and being third person can belong to the same sort 
of entity; but third person is a property of a linguistic expression, 
and linguistic expressions normally don't have personal names of 
their own, and barring witchcraft, are never dogs. 

6 When a speaker uses a proper name with a referent not re- 
solvable by the addressee, in open defiance to the Cooperative Prin- 
ciple (rather than in honest error), that fact communicates informa- 
tion by conversational implicature in the familiar way. 

7 Including nominal expressions and also verbal and adjectival, 
insofar as they refer to events, states, and properties (or situation- 

« For example, in lexical or (more likely — cf. Nunberg 1978, 
Green 1989, 1993a, Helmreich 1994) semantic or pragmatic rules. 

9 The symbol A is an ad hoc abbreviation whose purpose in this 
figure and those following is to keep the representation as compact 
and intuitively intelligible as possible. Strictly speaking, the value of 
BKD is a set of mutual-belief psoas, all of which involve the speaker 
and the addressee. One of them is about normal beliefs of English 
speakers, one of them is about normal beliefs of sales agents, and one 
of them is about a particular purchasing event. 

'" In the case of so-called extended referents {ham sandwiches 
and so on) the reasonableness of this belief depends on the address- 
ee's ability to get from beliefs about normal beliefs about THE USE of 
the expression to contextually likely referents for it. 

' ' The value of such an attribute has to be a sign with a partic- 
ular phonstring rather than a fully specified sign in order to allow for 
the unintentional utterance of ambiguous expressions, and for the 
utterance of unassignable phonstrings such as expressions in foreign 

230 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

languages. It can't just be a phonstring, because that would preclude 
the possibility of homonymy. 

12 The observant reader will note that the anchoring condition 
on the index is made explicit in Fig. VIII. If the values of the SPKR 
and ADDR values of C-INDS are objects of type referent, and not of 
type index, there is no need to include corresponding anchoring con- 
ditions for them in representations of expressions that do not include 
first and second person pronouns. 

13 For this reason, it is a mistake to assume that the use of forms 
which reflect conflicting assumptions necessarily results in a defec- 
tive utterance (called "infelicitous" rather than "ungrammatical" be- 
cause the "violation" is pragmatic rather than a matter of grammar). 
As often as not, when language users hear in context an utterance 
which would seem to require mutually inconsistent background as- 
sumptions, they will attribute to the speaker additional beliefs which 
eliminate the contradiction. For example: given the propositions that 
the Speaker respects Y and that the Speaker doesn't respect Y, they 
may add domains or reasons for each proposition and be content to 
assume that the Speaker respects Y in some role, but doesn't respect 
Y in some other role. 

•4 In English, passives with sentential and prepositional subjects, 
such as (i) and (ii) obviously are not subject to the constraint 
mentioned in Fig. X. 

(i) That welfare encourages the expansion of single-parent families 
is taken for granted by a frightening number of people. 

(ii) In the garden was considered the best place to hide. 

Whether this means that there are two passive lexical rules in Eng- 
lish, one for derived NP-subjects, and one for any sort of subject, or 
that the constraint is better represented in the description of English 
as a detail in the multiple-inheritance lexical type hierarchy (see 
below), is tangential to the point being illustrated here. 

15 I have not described the propagation of these constraints from 
individual forms to larger expressions of which they are a part. That 
is a fairly complicated matter, the outlines of which are to be found 
in the treatment of the projection problem for presupposition 
described by Morgan (1973) and formalized by Gazdar (1979). 


BIRNER, Betty Jean. 1992. The discourse function of inversion in Eng- 
lish. Northwestern Ph.D. dissertation in Linguistics. 

BORKIN, Ann. 1974. Raising to object position. University of Michigan 
Ph.D. dissertation in Linguistics. 



Green: The structure of CONTEXT 2 3 1 

Carpenter, Bob. 1992. The logic of typed feature structures. Cam- 
bridge Tracts in Theoretical Computer Science 32. New York: 
Cambridge University Press. 

Cohen, Philip R., & Hector J. Levesque. 1990. Rational interaction as 
the basis for communication. Intentions in communication, ed. by 
Philip R. Cohen, Jerry Morgan, and Martha E. Pollack, 221-256. 
Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press. 

Davison, Alice 1980. Peculiar passives. Language 56:42-66. 

Gazdar, Gerald. 1979. Pragmatics, implicature, presupposition, and 
logical form. NY: Academic Press. 

Green, Georgia M. 1981. Pragmatics and syntactic description. Studies 
in the Linguistic Sciences ll(l):27-38. Urbana, Illinois: Depart- 
ment of Linguistics, University of Illinois. 

. 1984. Some remarks on how words mean. Bloomington, IN: 

Indiana University Linguistics Club. 

. 1989. Pragmatics and natural language understanding. Hills- 
dale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. 

. 1992. The cooperative principle, rationality, and the nature of 

politeness. Ms. 

. 1993a. Rationality and Gricean inference. Cognitive Science 

Technical Report UIUC-BI-CS-93-09. Urbana, IL: University of 
Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. 

. 1993b. Nondescriptional accounts of word meaning and ref- 
erence. Cognitive Science Technical Report UIUC-BI-CS-93-12. 
Urbana, IL: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. 

1993c. Towards an HPSG account of co-called 'Focus Inversion'. 


GRICE, H. Paul. 1957. Meaning. Philosophical review 66:377-388. 

. 1975. Logic and conversation. Syntax and semantics, vol. 3: 

Speech acts, ed. by Peter Cole and Jerry L. Morgan, 41-58. NY: 
Academic Press. 

HELMREICH, Stephen. 1994. Pragmatic referring functions in Montague 
grammar. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Ph.D. 
dissertation in Linguistics. 

Kripke, Saul. 1972. Naming and necessity. Semantics of natural lan- 
guage, ed. by Donald Davidson and Gil Harman, 253-355. Dor- 
drecht: D. Reidel. 

Levine, Robert. 1989. On focus inversion: syntactic valence and the 
role of a SUBCAT list. Linguistics 27:1013-1055. 

Morgan, Jerry L. 1973. Presupposition and the representation of 
meaning: prolegomena. University of Chicago Ph.D. dissertation in 

NUNBERG, Geoffrey. 1978. The pragmatics of reference. CUNY Ph.D. 
dissertation in Linguistics. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University 
Linguistics Club. 

Pollard, Carl, & Drew Moshier. 1990. Unifying partial descriptions of 
sets. Information, language and cognition. Vancouver Studies in 
Cognitive Science, Vol. 1:285-322. Vancouver: University of 
British Columbia Press. 

232 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

, & Ivan Sag. 1987. Information-based syntax and semantics, 

vol. 1. Stanford University, Center for the Study of Language and 

, & Ivan Sag. 1994. Head-driven phrase structure grammar. 

Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 

Postal, Paul M. 1974. On raising. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press. 

Prince, Ellen. 1978. A comparison of WH-clefts and pseudo-clefts in 
discourse. Language 54:883-906. 

SHIEBER, Stuart. 1986. An introduction to unification-based ap- 
proaches to grammar. CSLI Lecture Notes Series. Stanford: Center 
for the Study of Language and Information. [Distributed by 
University of Chicago Press]. 

Ward, Gregory. 1985. The semantics and pragmatics of preposing. 
University of Pennsylvania Ph.D. dissertation in Linguistics. 



Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 




Rebecca Herman 
Ohio State University 

In Karuk there are two phonetically identical but 
phonologically distinct labial glides. Based on the patterning 
of these glides in glide deletion, coda nasalization, and 
vowel harmony, I will argue that one of the glides is con- 
sonantal in nature and the other is vocalic in nature. 



Karuk has two phonetically identical but phonologically distinct 
labial glides. I will present evidence that one of the glides is conso- 
nantal in nature and the other is vocalic in nature. The existence of a 
contrast between vocalic and consonantal glides in a single language 
argues against the widely-held assumption that glides and vowels 
are featurally identical and differ only in prosodic properties. 

2. Theoretical background 

The distinction between vocalic and consonantal glides may be 
captured representationally using the model of feature organization 
presented in Clements & Hume (1994). (See also Clements, 1991, 
Herzallah, 1991, and Hume, 1992.) 


(a) vocalic glides 



consonantal glides 




[ -open] 


In these representations, vocalic segments have a vocalic node 
dominating the aperture and V-place nodes. This is motivated by 
harmony processes in which all height and place features spread 
across intervening consonants. The separation of the vocalic node 
into aperture and V-place nodes is motivated by assimilation pro- 
cesses in which only height features, to the exclusion of place 

234 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

features, or only place features, to the exclusion of height features, 
spread. The C-place node dominating the vocalic node is motivated 
by the spreading of minor articulations with major articulations, as 
well as by the cross-linguistic inability of consonant place features to 
spread from consonant to consonant across a vowel. (Since glides are 
redundantly high, the aperture features for glides are not crucial to 
my analysis and will be disregarded throughout.) Consonantal seg- 
ments are represented with their place features immediately domi- 
nated by the C-place node, as in (lb) above. 

The No-Crossing Constraint in (2) successfully prevents elements 
from being multiply-linked for features across vowels. 

(2) No-Crossing Constraint 

Association lines linking two elements on tier j to two 
elements on tier k may not cross. (Clements & Hume, 1994) 

The ill-formed multiply-linked structures in (3), (adopted from 
Hume, 1992) which represent multiple-linking of features across a 
vocalic segment, all violate the No-Crossing Constraint. 

(3) Ill-formed multiply-linked structures 

a) * C-place C-place C-place b) * C-place C-place C-place 

vocalic vocalic vocalic vocalic vocalic 

V-place V-place V-place V-place 


[Fl] [F2] [Fl] [F2] 

c) * C-place C-place C-place 

I I I 

vocalic vocalic vocalic 

I I I 

V-place V-place V-place 

[Fl] [F2] 

The well-formed multiply-linked structures in (4) on the next page, 
(adopted from Hume, 1992) which represent multiple-linking of 
features across a consonantal segment, do not violate the No- 
Crossing Constraint. 

3. Vocalic and consonantal glides cross-linguistically 

Cross-linguistic evidence has shown that there is a difference 
between vocalic and consonantal glides. (This analysis of vocalic and 
consonantal glides follows Hume, 1993.) 

In Ainu the transitivizing suffix vowel assimilates completely to 
the stem vowel, so the vocalic nodes of the suffix and stem vowels 
are multiply-linked across the consonant. (Data in (5) drawn from Ito 
(1984), original data from Chiri (1952).) 

Herman: "La double vie de W" or the status of [w] in Karuk 




(4) Well-formed multiply-linked structures 

a) C-place C-place C-place b) C-place C-place C-place 




[Fl] [F2] 

c) C-place C-place C-place 




[Fl] [F2: 







(5) a. [mak-a] 

b. [ker-e] 

c. [pis-i] 

d. [pop-o] 

e. [tus-u] 

'to open' 

'to touch' 

'to ask' 

'to boil' 

'to shake' 





















The multiply-linked surface representation of the vowels across the 
consonant from (5h), for example, is given in (6). 




C-place C-place C-place 


[coronal ' 


In Ainu, the glides are opaque to vowel harmony. The suffix vowel in 
these cases surfaces as [e]. This may be the underlying form of the 
suffix or this may be the default value for an unspecified vowel. The 
crucial point is that the suffix vowel is not assimilated. 

(7) a. 



























cause to 






















The opacity of glides to vowel harmony in Ainu demonstrates their 
vocalic nature. If glides are represented as vocalic, as in (la), then 
multiple linking of the vocalic node across a glide would be ill- 
formed, as shown in (8). This is the desired result, blocking harmony. 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 


[u y + u] 
C-place C-place C-place 

vocalic vocalic 

1 I 

V-place V-place 




Therefore, glides in Ainu are best represented as vocalic. Some 
languages, on the other hand, have glides which are best represented 
as consonantal. Kirghiz (data and analysis from McDougall, 1994, 
original data from Herbert & Poppe, 1963) and Efik (data and anal- 
ysis from Parkinson, 1994) are two such languages. One effect of the 
consonantal nature of glides in Kirghiz and Efik is their transparency 
in vowel harmony. In Kirghiz, a vowel agrees in coronality and labi- 
ality with the preceding vowel. 

(9) a. [isten] 'from the job' c. [koldon] 'from the lake' 
b. [etten] 'from the meat' d. [asandan] 'from Asan' 

Glides in Kirghiz are transparent to vowel harmony. 

(10) a. [iiydon] 'from the house' b. [tokoydon] 'from the forest' 

Similarly, in Efik the non-root vowel /e/ (shown here using the 
second person singular subject marker and the negative particle 
/ke/) assimilates in place features to the following stem vowel. 

'you (sg.) build' 
'you (sg.) break' 
'you (sg.) see' 
'you (sg.) dance' 
'you (sg.) remember' 
'you (sg.) chew' 
's/he is not sleeping' 
's/he is not seeing' 

Following Parkinson (1994), this is analyzed as place assimilation 
which, as exemplified in (12), results in the V-place node of the root 
vowel being multiply-linked to both the root and the prefix vowels. 


[a + t a] 











c-place C-place C-place 


vocalic vocalic 




Herman: "La double vie de W" or the status of [w] in Karuk 
















Even if a glide intervenes, the vowel assimilates to the following 
vowel's place features. 

'you (sg.) cry' 

'you (sg.) show' 

'you (sg.) drop (a plate)' 

's/he is not flogging' 

's/he is not showing' 

's/he is not tearing' 

The transparency of glides to vowel harmony in Efik demonstrates 
their consonantal nature. If glides in Efik are represented as conso- 
nantal (as in (14a)), then harmony across the glide correctly results 
in a well-formed structure. On the other hand, if glides are repre- 
sented as vocalic (as in (14b)), then harmony across the glide would 
incorrectly result in an ill-formed structure due to violation of the 
No-Crossing Constraint. 


a) [a + y a] b) * [a + y a] 

C-place C-place C-place 




C-place C-place C-place 

I I I 

vocalic vocalic vocalic 

V-place V-place 




[coronal ] 


The data from Ainu, Kirghiz, and Efik show that languages may 
have either vocalic or consonantal glides. Therefore, phonological 
theory must recognize two distinct representations for a given glide. 
Given the existence of these representations, the prediction is that a 
contrast between vocalic and consonantal glides in a single language 
should exist. 

4. Karuk 

The prediction that vocalic and consonantal glides may contrast 
in a single language is confirmed in Karuk', a Hokan language. Data 
from Karuk show a contrast between phonetically identical conso- 
nantal and vocalic glides. Both types of glides occur in the same 
prosodic position. 

(15) vocalic /w/ 

a. /ikriw/ 'to sit, live' 

b. /6aw/ 'to knock down acorns' 

c. /yaw/ 'good' 

Evidence for the status of glides as vocalic or consonantal comes from 
phonological patterning, as parts 5. 6. and 7 will show. 

Data from Karuk are drawn from Bright (1957). I have adopted 
a slightly different transcription system than the one used by Bright. 

consonantal /w/ 

d. /ikyiw/ 'to fall' 

e. /9aw/ 'to float' 

f. /saw/ 'to flow' 

238 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

I transcribe all bilabial spirants as /w/. Bright transcribes what I am 
calling "consonantal /w/" as /v/ and what I am calling "vocalic /w/" 
as /v/. I transcribe all length on vowels as /:/. Bright transcribes un- 
derlying length on vowels with a single dot and derived length with 
a colon. I transcribe all rhotic approximants as /r/. Bright transcribes 
all stem-final /r/s as Irl, to indicate that they nasalize pre-consonan- 
tally (see part 6 for discussion of nasalization). The phoneme inven- 
tory of Karuk is presented in (16). Length is distinctive on vowels, 
but the phonemic status of [o:] and [e:] is questionable, since they 
only appear long and are often transparently the result of coales- 
cence of a high vowel with a low vowel. Additional diacritics used 
here (as well as by Bright) include the high level tone marked [a], 
and the falling tone marked [a]. (Tonal phenomena and lengthening 
and shortening phenomena will not be addressed in this paper.) 

(16) Phoneme Inventory 

p m w u o t 6 s 

sonorant - -t--l- + -l-- 

continuant - - -I- + + - -I- + 

constr. gl. + 


dorsal • • 


coronal ••••••••• 

distributed - + - + - +- -I- + 

5. Glide deletion 

The two types of glides in Karuk pattern differently in glide 
deletion. Vocalic glides delete between vowels. 

(17) a. /ikriw + isrih/ -> [ikri:srih] 'to sit down' 
































/6iw + isrih/ 



'to put down' 


/piw -1- isrih/ 



'to step down' 


/?axaw -t- ak/ 





/ikyaw + ara/ 



'to make with' 


/?ay + at/ 



'was afraid of 

Evidence that this is deletion, not insertion, comes from the unpre- 
dictability of the word-final glide. 

(18) a. /ikyaw/ 'to make' 

b. /iyway/ 'to pour' i 

c. /?axaw/ 'to collapse, used esp.of earth' 

d. /?axay/ 'to take (something) from (someone)' 

e. /?a:w/ 'California wild grape' 

f. /?a:y/ 'face' 

g. /?u:w/ 'to put, take' 
h. /?u:y/ 'mountain, hill' 

Herman: "La double vie de W" or the status of [w] in Karuk 239 

Further evidence that this is deletion, not insertion, comes from the 
appearance of these glides in other environments, such as pre- 

(19) a. /piw + kara/ — > [pi:wkara] 'to step out over' 

b. /iyway + raninih/ —> [iywa:yramnih] 'to pour into' 

c. /iyway + kurih/ — > [iywa:ykurih] 'to pour (into a hole)' 

Therefore, the glide~0 alternation must be analyzed as glide-deletion, 
not glide-insertion. 

Other segments do not delete intervocalically. 

(20) a. /tasir -I- ara/ — > [tasirara] 'brush for acorn flour' 

b. /?a:kram + ar/ -^ [?a:kramar] 'to go argue' 

c. /ikrup -I- ara/ -^ [ikriipara] 'to sew with' 

d. /Iskax -I- isrih/ -^ [iskaxisrih] 'to quiet down' 

e. /ihyarih -I- isrih/ -^ [ihyarihisrih] 'to stand still' 

f. /?e:9 -I- e:p/ -^ [?e:Oe:p] 'to take away from' 

The difference between segments which delete intervocalically and 
those which do not is that the segments which delete have a vocalic 
node. The distinguishing feature of segments which delete cannot be 
[sonorant], because [r m] do not delete, as shown in (20a, b), nor can it 
be [continuant], because [x h 9] do not delete, as shown in (20d, e, f), 
nor can it be a place feature, because there are labials which do not 
delete, as shown in (20b, c). coronals which do not delete, as shown 
in (20f), dorsals which do not delete, as shown in (20d), and placeless 
segments which do not delete, as shown in (20e). The only feature 
unifying the deleting segments and excluding all of the non-deleting 
segments is their vocalic node. 


vocalic vocalic vocalic 
Another set of glides does not delete intervocalically. 



/ikyiw -l-isrih/ 



'to fall down' 


/Vaw -1- at/ 

— > 




/ikraw + ara/ 

— > 


'to grind with' 


/'?iw + iruw/ 



'to be nearly dead 
from exhaustion' 


/saw -1- a/ 





/?araw + uk/ 

— > 


'to start from' 


/Vatiw -1- a/ 



'burden-basket load' 

Given the argument that deleting segments are characterized with a 
vocalic node, the non-deleting segments in (22) must not be charac- 
terized with a vocalic node. (23) shows how the distinct behavior of 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

glides which delete and glides which do not may be attributed to 
their feature structure. 

(23) a. /piw + isrih/ -> [pi:srih] 

root root root 

C-place C-place C-place 

I . I . I . 

vocalic vocalic vocalic 

I I I 

V-place V-place V-place 

I I > 

[coronal] | [coronal] 

6. Coda nasalization 

b. /?iw + iruw/ 

root root 

> [?iwiruw] 


C-place C-place C-place 











The two types of glides also pattern differently in coda nasal- 
ization. ItI nasalizes in non-final coda position (alternatively: pre- 

(24) a. /ku:r -I- taku/ -^ [kuntaku] 


The consonantal /w/ also nasalizes pre-consonantally. The stems 
with final /w/s which nasalize (25) are exactly those stems whose 
final /w/s did not delete in glide-deletion (22). (/r/ nasalizes 
following a nasal segment, as shown in (25c, e, g).) 


/ku:r -I- taku/ 

/?ihar -I- ko:/ 

/tasir -f- reduplication/ 

/wur -f- tih/ 

/ikmar -I- reduplication/ 

'to sit on' 

'to go there to dance' 

'to brush repeatedly' 

'to be flowing' 

'to beat up' 



/ikyiw -1- suru/ 

— > 


'to fall off 


/?aw -I- tih/ 

— > 


'to be eating' 


/ikraw + raw -i- a/ 

— > 


'hopper for meal' 


/?iw -t- kara/ 

— > 


'to drown' 


/saw -1- rupu/ 

— > 


'to flow downriver' 


/Varaw -I- sipriw/ 

— > 


'to start out' 


/?atiw -1- ram/ 

— > 


'pack basket' 

There seems to be a constraint against [-i-son, -i-cont] segments 
with a consonantal constriction in non-final coda position. 


* [+son] 

Oral Cavity 





Herman: "La double vie de W" or the status of [w] in Karuk 


The language is otherwise quite free in allowing coda conso- 
nants, and all consonants except Ixl and consonantal /w/ may occur 
in coda. Neither /y/ nor the vocalic /w/ is a [+son, +cont] segment 
with a consonantal constriction, so they do not violate the constraint 
in (26), and so they do not nasalize. Note that these are exactly the 
same stems whose final glides deleted in (17). 



/ikriw + ra:m/ 
/9iw + taku/ 
/piw + ka6/ 
/?axaw + suru/ 



'to lie on' 

'to step over (a creek)' 

'(earth) to cave off 


/y/, which is always vocalic, does not nasalize either. 

(28) a. /ikwa:y + ku/ -^ [ikwa:yku] 'to lean against' 

b. /iyway + kurih/ -^ [iywa:ykurih] 'to pour into a hole' 

To summarize, the vocalic labial glides are allowed in non-final 
coda position. The consonantal labial glides and the /r/ (together de- 
fined as the natural class of [+son, +cont] segments with a consonantal 
constriction) nasalize in non-final coda position. 

7. Vowel harmony 

The two types of glides also pattern differently in vowel har- 
mony. There are a few suffixes with harmonizing initial vowels 
(which are represented with V). 



/ikxip -1- Vwra0/ 

— > 


'to fly over' 


/taxarap + Vwra6/ 



'to stride over' 


/ikfuk + Vwra:/ 



'to climb over' 


/taknih + VGuna/ 



'to roll around' 


/pa0 + VBuna/ 



'to throw around' 


/ikfuk + Veuna/ 



'to crawl around' 


harmony produces a 


ffix vowel mu 

Itiply-linked with 


vocalic node of the stem vowel. ^ 

C-place C-place C-place 





[Fl] [F2] 

If the consonantal /w/ is specified with [labial] immediately dom- 
inated by C-place, the prediction would be that it should be trans- 
parent to vowel harmony (similar to the examples from Kirghiz and 
Efik discussed above in (10) and (13)). The following forms provide 
suggestive evidence that the consonantal /w/ is transparent. These 
are the only available examples of a stem with a final glide which 
has been shown to be consonantal (see (22a) and (25a)) combining 

242 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

with harmonizing suffixes. The harmonizing vowel does have the 
same quality as the final stem vowel. 

(31) a. /ikyiw + Vwra6/ -^ [ikyiw-iwraG] 'to fall into a sweathouse' 
b. /ikyiw + Vwruk/ -^ [ikyiw-iwruk] 'to fall over (a bank)' 

The well-formed structure that would result from multiple-linking of 
vocalic nodes across a consonantal glide is shown here. 


[i w + i] 

C-place C-place C-place 






As expected, the vocalic /w/ patterns differently than the con- 
sonantal /w/ in vowel harmony. The only available example of a 
stem with a final glide which has been shown to be vocalic combining 
with a harmonizing suffix is shown here. (See 17d and 27d for evi- 
dence of this glide's vocalic nature.) 

(33) /?axaw + Vwruk/ -^ [?axawruk] '(earth) to slide down over 

(a bank)' 

One possible explanation for this form is that multiple-linkage across 
the vocalic glide is prohibited. 


* [a w + a] 

C-place C-place C-place 

vocalic vocalic 

I I 

V-place V-place 

I I 

[pharyngeal] | 


Since the unspecified vowel remains unspecified on the surface, it is 
deleted by well-formedness constraints. The degemination of adja- 
cent identical oral sonorants which results is seen elsewhere in the 
language. Despite a lack of independent supporting evidence for this 
proposal, the crucial point here is that the vocalic /w/ does not pat- 
tern with the consonantal /w/ in being transparent to vowel 

8. Conclusion 

In conclusion, there are two phonologically distinct /w/s in 
Karuk — one which patterns with /r/ and one which patterns with /y/. 

Herman: "La double vie de W" or the status of [w] in Karuk 243 

The /w/ which patterns with /r/ can be characterized as consonantal 
in nature. It does not delete between vowels, it nasalizes in coda 
position, and it is transparent to vowel harmony. It can be repre- 
sented as bearing only a C-place node. The /w/ which patterns with 
/y/ can be characterized as vocalic in nature. It deletes between 
vowels, does not nasalize in coda position, and is opaque to vowel 
harmony. It may be represented as bearing also a vocalic and 
V-place node. The facts from Karuk are significant because they 
provide new evidence regarding the status of glides in the world's 
languages. Not only can languages have either vocalic or consonantal 
glides, but also a single language can have both vocalic and con- 
sonantal glides. 


* Grateful acknowledgment to D. Odden and E. Hume for help 
with this project. Thanks also to M. Bradshaw, C. McDougall, and F. 
Parkinson for comments on earlier drafts. Any mistakes are, of 
course, my own. 

• Pronunciations of the name of this language vary. "Karok" is 
the more anglicized version of the name while "Karuk" is preferred 
by native speakers. Therefore, most recent works written about this 
language used the name "Karuk." (Monica Macaulay, personal com- 

2 Problems with assuming that this is total assimilation arise 
from cases involving [e:] and [o:]. When the stem vowel is [e:], the 
suffix vowel is [ij and when the stem vowel is [o:], the suffix vowel is 
[u]. There are two possible analyses. Either this is complete harmony 
linking vocalic nodes, but [e:] derives from /ai/ and [o:] derives from 
/au/, or else this is place harmony linking V-place nodes to pre- 
specified high suffix vowels, and a constraint against high pharyngeal 
vowels produces the correct result when the stem vowel is /a/. 


BRIGHT, W. 1957. The Karok Language. University of California Pub- 
lications in Linguistics, volume 13. Berkeley: University of 
California Press. 

Chiri, M. 1952. "Ainugo ni okeru boin chowa (Vowel harmony in the 
Ainu language)." Hokkaido University Bulletin in Humanities 1, 
101-118. Reprinted in Chiri Mashio Zenshuu (Collected works of 
Mashio Chiri), vol. 4, 201-225 (1974). Tokyo: Heibonsha. 

Clements, G. N. & Elizabeth V. Hume. 1994. The internal organization 
of speech sounds. A handbook of phonological theory., ed. by 
John Goldsmith. Oxford: Blackwell. 

Herbert, R. & N. Poppe. 1963. Kirghiz manual. Uralic and Altaic 
Series, vol 33. Bloomington: Indiana University Publications. 

244 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

Hume, E. 1992. Front vowels, coronal consonants, and their interaction 

in non-linear phonology. Cornell University Ph.D. dissertation. 
Hume, E. 1993. On the representation of glides. Talk presented at the 

University of Illinois Linguistics Department. 
ITO, J. 1984. Melodic dissimilation in Ainu. Linguistic Inquiry 

MCDOUGALL, C. 1994 An optimality theoretic account of height- / 

dependent vowel harmony in Yakut and Kirghiz. Department of * 

Linguistics, The Ohio State University, MS. ) 

Parkinson, F. 1994. The place feature [pharyngeal] as a marker of 

height in Efik vowel harmony. Department of Linguistics, The 

Ohio State University, MS. 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Elizabeth Hume 

David Odden 

Ohio State University 

In this paper we challenge the assumption that there 
exists a distinctive feature [consonantal]. Examination of 
cases in which [consonantal] has traditionally been used to 
describe natural classes of sounds, phonemic contrasts, or 
changes that a sound undergoes, reveals that there is no 
evidence in support of the feature. We therefore conclude 
that [consonantal] is superfluous and can be eliminated 
from feature theory. 

1. Introduction 

The status of the major class features has been brought into the 
theoretical limelight recently, with McCarthy's 1988 proposal that 
[sonorant] and [consonantal] are contained inside the root node, and 
thus cannot spread or dissimilate except via total segmental assimi- 
lation or deletion. This proposal is challenged by Kaisse 1992 for the 
feature [consonantal], citing examples where it appears to spread. 
Cho & Inkelas 1993 challenge the evidence presented by Kaisse, re- 
analyzing certain cases of [consonantal] spreading. In this paper we 
approach the question differently, by questioning the assumption 
that there EXISTS such a feature. The question of whether [consonan- 
tal] spreads then becomes meaningless, since it depends on 'conso- 
nantal' which we claim is not a distinctive feature at all. 

This paper reviews some of the evidence for postulating the 
feature [consonantal]. Evidence in support of a feature can take var- 
ious forms. For example, a feature might be necessary to describe 
changes that a sound or class of sounds undergoes; it might be crucial 
in describing sounds as a natural class; or it might be needed to de- 
scribe existing phonemic contrasts. Our conclusion will be that there 
is no such evidence for [consonantal], and, consequently, the feature 
should be dispensed with entirely. 

Before examining the evidence, it is important to be clear about 
what this supposed feature entails. For this, we draw on the SFE 
definition below. 

( 1 ) Consonantal sounds are produced with a radical obstruc- 
tion in the midsagittal region of the vocal tract; nonconso- 
nantal sounds are produced without such an obstruction. 
(Chomsky & Halle 1968:302) 

The intent of this definition is to group vowels, glides, and laryngeal 
consonants as one natural class, and the remaining sounds as an- 

246 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

other. Yet, ambiguity in this and subsequent definitions suggests that 
doing so is not a trivial matter. Take the seemingly straightforward 
notion VOCAL TRACT, for example. As the sampling of definitions in (2) 
reveals, there is disagreement among phoneticians concerning what 
actually constitutes the vocal tract; that is, does it include the larynx 
or not, an issue which is crucial to the SPE definition since it bears on 
the question of whether glottal stop is [-consonantal]. 

(2) Definitions of vocal tract 

The vocal tract includes all of the air passages above the 
larynx from the glottis to the lips. (Borden & Harris 1980:90) 

The organs of speech. ..namely the lungs, trachea, larynx, the 
pharyngeal and oral cavities with their component parts, 
and the nasal passages, constitute as a group what is termed 
the vocal tract. (Clark & Yallop 1990:14) 

The vocal tract is that tube-like series of cavities which 
begins at the vocal folds and ends at the opening of the lips. 
The nasal cavities provide an alternate outlet to the vocal 
tract (Daniloff 1973:169) 

The air passages above the larynx are known as the vocal 
tract. (Ladefoged 1975:3) 

During the production of vowels the vocal tract may be 
viewed as a tortuously shaped tube open at one end (the 
opening between the lips) and bounded at the other end by 
a vibrating valve which has the effect of closing off the tube 
at the larynx. (Minifie 1973:235) 

In a recent definition, Halle avoids the ambiguity associated with the 
term VOCAL TRACT by replacing it with the term ORAL CAVITY, thereby 
clearly excluding laryngeals from the set of [+consonantal] segments. 

(3) Consonantal sounds are produced with a constriction in 
the central passage through the oral cavity; nonconso- 
nantal sounds are produced without such a constriction. 
(Halle 1992) 

Despite this terminological change, ambiguity remains, although in 
this instance it concerns the term CONSTRICTION. As illustrated in (4), 
research indicates that the notion constriction is central in describing 
the production of not only consonants, but vowels as well (see 
Clements & Hume 1995, Gorecka 1989, Wood 1979, 1982 and refer- 
ences therein). 

(4) The preference for the four constriction locations is ap- 
parently universal. These locations are acoustically and 
physiologically significant. They divide the spectral space 
into four vowel quality families. (Wood 1979:40) 

Issues in the phonetic definition of [consonantal] aside, it is the 
phonological predictions made by these definitions that we challenge. 
In doing so we assume the classical understanding of [consonantal], 

Hume & Odden: Contra [consonantal] 247 

which predicts that vowels, glides, and laryngeal consonants will act 
as a natural class, and that the converse of this collection will act as a 
class. Thus, when we address the question of [consonantal], this is the 
object whose existence we challenge. We do not consider approaches 
such as that of Hyman 1985 where [consonantal] essentially becomes 
a stand-in for [syllabic], such that glides are specified as [+consonan- 
tal]. One of the main reasons to specify glides in this manner is to 
avoid certain classes of OCP violations, specifically the supposed vio- 
lation incurred by glide plus homorganic vowel sequences such as yi 
and wu. We suggest that such sequences are not a problem given a 
detailed understanding of the OCP. It has been argued in Odden 1988 
that the OCP is not inviolable, and therefore it is possible for yi and 
wu to be ruled out in Korean while being allowed in English. We thus 
claim that there is no compelling reason to modify the standard defi- 
nition of [consonantal] based on OCP considerations. 

2. Changes in the value of [consonantal] 

Turning to the argument, we consider first the evidence from 
the patterning of sounds. Our first examples involve cases in which 
the value of [consonantal] appears to change; that is, where a surface 
form differs from the corresponding underlying form in its value of 
[consonantal], as is the case in lenitions and hardenings. In each ex- 
ample we will show that reference to [consonantal] is unnecessary; 
this same conclusion holds for the many additional examples that we 
are unable to discuss due to space limitations. 

2.1 Changes yielding [-consonantal] 

To begin, consider cases of lenition such as that found in 
Axininca Campa (Payne 1981) where /k/ and /p/ surface as [y] and 
[w]' after a vowel. In (5), the underlying stop is revealed in the un- 
inflected noun, while after the pronominal prefix no, /k/ becomes [y] 
and /p/ becomes [w]. Since lenition occurs only in the context of a 
vowel, this looks like a good candidate to attribute to [-consonantal] 
assimilation. However, since the values of [sonorant] and [continuant] 
also change, lenition could equally well be explained as assimilation 
to the sonorancy or continuancy of the preceding vowel. ^ 

(5) kanari 'wild turkey' no-yanari-ti 'my wild turkey' 

kosiri 'white monkey' no-yosiri-ti 'my white monkey' 

pac^aka 'gourd' no-wac'^aka-ti 'my gourd' 

porita 'small hen' no-worita-ti 'my small hen' 

yaarato 'black bee' no-yaarato-ti 'my black bee' 

Continuancy assimilation is precisely what is required to handle 
lenition in the Australian language Djapu (Morphy 1983). As illus- 
trated in (6) with the dative suffix ku (6a), the ergative suffix {,« 
(6b), and the associative suffix puy (6c), /p/ and /k/ become the 
labio-velar glide [w], and dental /t/ becomes the palatal glide [y] 
when they are preceded by vowels and liquids. The underlying stop 
values of p, t, k are motivated by the fact that lenition does not apply 

248 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

in pronouns and demonstratives, so a stop can appear after a vowel, 
as in the two initial forms. When preceded by an obstruent stop or 
nasal, the underlying stop value of the suffix is revealed, and when 
the suffix is preceded by a vowel or liquid, the lenited variant sur- 
faces. Note that since /r/ and III also trigger lenition, it would be im- 
possible to treat this as [-consonantal] assimilation, even though the 
value of [consonantal] seems to change. Instead, we analyze this as 
assimilation to [+continuant].3 


a. diya-ku 


T]a r a - k 

'1 sg' 









T^ay mi 1- wu 

'Ngaymil cl 

Ian' barukaT)ur-wu-ny 

'fruit type' 

b. balkurk-tu 


gUU T)-d u 


m a T)utyi - y 






T]aanar- y u 





'pelican nom.') 

c. rawalk-puy 


guu T]- b u y 










A similar lenition of /p/ and /k/ to [w] exists in Gurindji 
(McConvell 1988 and p.c); here, dental /th/ changes to [y] only after 

(7) a. t^arrakap-katyi 'tape-recorder, talkative' 

walu-watyi 'fireplace' 

pamarr-watyi 'money bag' 

b. wankaty-pa-niT)a n 'the same bad one' 
tyuwal-wa-niT)a n 'the same tall one' 

c. wurrkal-tyawu r) 'with green grass' 
miyat-tyawu T) 'having an initiated man' 
mita-yawuT) 'having a shield' 

Treating the change as one of continuancy derives support from the 
fact that in these and many other Australian languages, the feature 
[continuant] plays a central role in the consonantal system. As shown 
in (8), the inventory can be divided into continuants and stops, with 
the latter being divided further into the oral and nasal stops. These 
languages lack obstruent continuants, so the labial and velar continu- 
ants are [w], the alveolar continuants are [1] and [r], the retroflex ones 
are [1] and [r], and the palatal and dental are [y]. 

(8) Continuants w y r,l r,l y w 
Stops (oral) p t„ t t,d ty k 

(nasal) rn D n n ny r) 

Similar lenitions can be found in many other Australian lan- 
guages, as well as in the Tungusic languages Evenki and Negidal. We 


Hume & Odden: Contra [consonantal] 249 

would claim that in all of these cases [continuant] spreads; what is 
crucial to note about this class of lenitions is that the languages in 
question do not have contrasts between the surface glides which are 
lenited stops, and obstruent fricatives at that same point of articula- 
tion. That is, the appearance of a [consonantal] glide is essentially due 
to a phonetic detail about the language. What would motivate change 
to [-consonantal] would be the discovery of a language leniting /p/ to 
[w] after vowels, glides and laryngeals in particular, when the frica- 
tives Nl or /p/ also exist in the language. We take the lack of such 
examples to be evidence for the claim that lenition of stops to glides 
involves assimilation of [continuant].^ 

Lenition of p to w in coda position exists in Lama (Ourso & Ulrich 

(9) kpap-8 'to be similar' kpaw-s-u 'to reconcile' 
yap-8 'to buy' yaw 'buy!' 

A further example of apparent change in [consonantal] triggered 
by syllable position comes from Klingenheben's Law in Hausa (Schuh 
1972, Leben 1974, Inkelas & Cho 1993). As the examples in (10) 
show, coda consonants become sonorants: labials and velars become 
w, and coronals become trilled f. Given the syllabification constraints 
of the language, the preceding segment is always a vowel, hence 
[-consonantal]. Notice that in the case of labials and velars the result 
is a glide, but in the case of coronals the result is the consonant [r], so 
these changes could not be given a uniform characterization if this 
were a change in [consonantal]. These changes are the result of a 
constraint on possible coda segments in Hausa: a coda segment must 
be a sonorant, either a continuant or a nasal which is homorganic 
with the following segment. Klingenheben's Law is therefore charac- 
terized as a way of bringing representations into conformity with 
this requirement, by insertion of [-i-sonorant]. 

(10) /jib|ii/ 


'trash heap' 









'left side' 




'a poor one' 
'lefthanded one 



'very fast' 





The simplest structure-preserving change which brings codas into 
conformity with this condition is turning labials and velars into 

2.2 Changes yielding [+consonantal] 

The hardening of vocoids is also a possible test for the existence of 
[consonantal]. As this section shows, reference to this feature is not 
crucial for this phenomenon either. As noted in Kaisse 1992, Cypriot 
Greek strengthens the palatal glide y to [ky] when it follows a conso- 
nant, resulting in a change in the values of [consonantal], [continuant] 

250 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

and [sonorant]. The data in (9), drawn from Newton 1972, provide 
alternations between the nominative and genitive, where stem-final / 
becomes [y] before the genitive affix [u], and then hardens to [ky] 
after consonants, excluding [1] and nasals. It is important to note that 
glide-glide and laryngeal-glide clusters do not exist in the language, 
so we cannot properly test the relevance of [consonantal] here. 


mantilin mantilyii 'handkerchief 

tianin tianyu 'frying-pan' 

psarin psarkii 'fish' 

xorafin xorafkyu 'field' 

ammatin ammaSkyu 'eye' 

- ammatkyu 

xappin xapk^u 'pill' 

While Kaisse accounts for this by spreading [-i-consonantal] from the 
preceding consonant, hardening never applies after the sonorants 
/m n 1/, showing that this is not true across-the-board assimilation 
to the consonantality of all consonants. Cho & Inkelas 1993 attempt 
to relate this hardening to a general continuancy template in Greek 
which requires nonsyllabics to have the form fricative-stop. How- 
ever, the existence of the stop-stop sequences [pky] and [tk^] in 
ammatkyii and xapkyu indicates that the continuancy value of the 
segments is not consistently relevant. A change in sonorancy or con- 
tinuancy is sufficient to account for hardening, without recourse to 
[consonantal]. We suggest that glide hardening in Cypriot Greek is 
due to a general constraint, shown in (10), prohibiting /y/ from be- 
ing preceded by a consonant other than a sonorant stop. 

(12) *Cy (C ^ [+son, -cont]) 

The palatal glide y may not be preceded by a consonant, other 
than a sonorant stop. 

Another case of hardening comes from Romansch where postvo- 
calic glides /y w/ appear to strengthen to a velar stop before a tauto- 
syllabic consonant (Kamprath 1986), a phenomenon analyzed in 
Kaisse 1992 as spreading [+consonantal] from a consonant to the pre- 
ceding glide. Alternative accounts which do not rely on [consonantal] 
are also possible; we suggest two. First, since in each of the three 
synchronic examples of hardening offered, shown in (13), the glide is 
followed by /r/, hardening may be analyzed as the result of sonorant 
continuant dissimilation. Alternatively, one might argue that harden- 
ing occurs in response to a structural constraint of the language 
which prohibits glides in the coda of stressed closed syllables. Again, 
hardening is attributed to a change in the values of continuancy and 
sonorancy. While insufficient evidence from Romansch makes it im- 
possible to determine which of these alternatives is superior, the 
point remains that [consonantal] is not required to characterize the 

Hume & Odden: Contra [consonantal] 251 

(13) /krej + r/ [krekr] 'to believe' cf. kreja 'believes' 
/zdrej + r/ [zdrekr] 'to destroy' cf. zdreja 'destroys' 
/lawvowr + a/ [lavogrg] 'works' 

A significant set of changes resulting in [+consonantal] involves 
geminate consonants. Selkirk 1993 cites examples from Tashlhiyt 
Berber in (14) where geminate /w/ becomes [gg^]. This we treat as 
assignment of [-continuant] to geminate /w/. 

(14) nwa 'eat (aorist)' ngg^a 'eat (intensive)' 
iz"'wiY 'to be red' az'igg^ay 'redness' 

In Luganda (Cole 1967), geminate /w/ becomes [ggw], geminate lyl 
becomes [jj] and geminate l\l becomes [dd], as illustrated in (15) 
with the alternation between Class 5 singulars and Class 6 plurals. 
Gemination of the initial consonant occurs in the singular with con- 
comitant hardening of approximants; the quality of the underlying 
consonant is revealed in the Class 6 plural. This too we would treat as 
hardening to [-continuant] under gemination. The irrelevance of 
[consonantal] to this process is underscored by the fact that /I/ is 
already [-i-consonantal]. 

ggi magi 'egg' 
ddaala madaala 'ladder' 
zzike mazike 'chimpanzee' 
jjuba mayuba 'dove' 
ggwaanga mawaanga 'nation' 
ddaanga malaanga 'lily' 

Similar hardening of geminate glides to obstruent stops exists in Fula, 
where geminate /w/ hardens to [bb] and geminate lyl hardens to 
[jj]. As the examples in (14) show, hardening affects all continuant 
consonants, not just glides, due to a general constraint of Fula moti- 
vated in Paradis 1992 which prohibits geminate continuants. 

(16) Single C Geminate C 
saw-ru cabb-i 'stick' 
wuy-6e gujj-o 'thief 
sof-ru copp-i 'chick' 
kos-am kocc-e 'milk' 

Geminate continuants which would have been created by morpholo- 
gical processes are avoided by the following, from Paradis 1992. 

(17) * X X XX 

— > 
[-i-continuant] [-continuant] 

A preceding nasal consonant may also trigger hardening. For in- 
stance, in Kimatuumbi, as shown in (18), the glides lyl and /w/ 

252 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

surface as [j] and [g^] after a nasal consonant. The underlying stem 
initial consonant is revealed in the infinitive on the left. Hardening 
takes place after the Class 9 nasal prefix on the right. As in the cases 
just presented, we attribute this to a change in continuancy. Support 
for this comes from the fact that the lateral continuant l\l also hard- 
ens to [d] after a nasal; thus, sonorant continuants assimilate to the 
[-continuant] value of the nasal. 

ypkyta n-jjikyta 'full' 
wa n-g^aa.a 'dead' 
lima ndima.a 'cultivated' 

The same post nasal hardening exists in Luganda (Cole 1967); in this 
language labial w hardens to p. 

(19) ndele 'thongs' lulele 'thong' 
njuza 'I tear' kuyuza 'to tear' 
mpaande 'measures of cloth' luwaande 'measure of cloth' 
mpulila 'I hear' kuwulila 'to hear' 

Sesotho and Setswana have similar hardenings, as illustrated in 
(20); interestingly in these languages, not only does /w/ harden to 
[k^], but fricatives become aspirated plosives. This is illustrated in 
(17) with data from Setswana (Cole 1955). What drives these 
changes is a constraint on nasal-plus-consonant sequences; the con- 
sonant in such a sequence must be a voiceless plosive. 

(20) wela 'fall on' xo-n-k^ela 'to fall on me' 
sexa 'cut' xo-n-tshexa 'to cut me' 
direla 'do for' xo-n-tirela 'to do for me' 

Hardening may also be due to syllable position alone and again 
reference to [consonantal] is superfluous. For example, in Lango 
(Okello 1975) seen in (18), word-final postvocalic /y/ becomes a 
palatal obstruent [c]; this we analyze as assignment of [-cont] to a 
coda consonant, pursuant to a general prohibition against coda con- 
tinuants in the language. 

cooyo acoc 'write' 
yeeyo ayec 'carry on head' 

A further case involving syllable initial position comes from Portefio 
Spanish as discussed in Lozano 1979, Harris 1969, 1977, 1983, 1985. 
Morgan 1984, where the glides /y/ and /w/ surface as homorganic 
obstruent fricatives in syllable-initial position. 

(22) ley 'law' lezes 'laws' 
ir 'to go' yendo -> zendo 'going' 
bibir 'to live' bibyendo 'living' 
orfanato 'orphanage' werfano — > y^erfano 'orphan' 

We suggest that this change involves onset glides becoming voiced 
stops, hence a change in the value of [continuant]. The appearance of 

Hume & Odden: Contra [consonantal] 


fricatives in (22) is the result of a general lenition of all voiced ob- 
struent stops in Spanish, which applies everywhere except after ho- 
morganic liquids and nasals. As Lozano 1979 points out, hardened 
glides appear as stops in these contexts, as in [ut) g^erfano] 'an 
orphan', which is precisely the environment where obstruent stops 
cannot be lenited. 

3. Natural classes 

Next we turn to the possibility that [consonantal] is crucial for 
characterizing natural classes. Examples are actually very difficult to 
find in the literature. It is possible to find many cases where [conso- 
nantal] is used to characterize classes of segments, but quite difficult 
to find cases where it is apparently crucial. For example, rule (23) 
from Tibetan given in Odden 1978 spirantizes noncoronal stops be- 
tween vowels, and this formulation employs the feature [consonan- 
tal]. However, inclusion of [consonantal] is entirely redundant: since 
all stops in the language (indeed in all languages) are consonantal, 
mentioning [consonantal] does not productively restrict the rule. 



r- n 

f— -| 









[+syr| (p. 

P, Y / V_V) 

A similar non-crucial use of [consonantal] can be found in Hayes 
1986, which presents the Lithuanian vowel backing rule in (24). The 
intent of the rule is to back /e/ before [-consonantal] u and w, but 
not velar consonants. We would maintain that the correct account de- 
pends on the distinction between C-place and vocalic feature speci- 
fications (see e.g. Clements 1990a, Clements & Hume 1995); u and w 
are characterized with vocalic [dorsal], a specification which velar 
consonants do not have. 



[+back~] / 


(eu, ew 

ou, ow) 

Our survey of the phonological literature reveals that most uses 
of [consonantal] are unwarranted, as in the two cases which we have 
just mentioned, or are technically incorrect. To cite just one example 
of the latter, the syllable structure algorithm presented for German 
in (25) from Rubach 1990 indicates that all [-consonantal] segments 
are realized as syllable nuclei. Without further qualifications, this in- 
correctly predicts that not only vowels, but also glides and the 
laryngeal /h/ are syllable peaks. 

254 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1 994) 


X X 

I I 

[-cons] — > [-cons] 

There are two legitimate phenomena which at first glance seem 
to motivate reference to [consonantal]. The first involves nasalization 
phenomena, and the second, the calculation of sonority. We argue 
that these cases are in fact related. 

Consider nasalization first. A common process of nasalization, 
shown in (26), is documented in Arabela and Warao where nasality 
spreads rightward to vowels, glides and laryngeals, and in 
Capanahua, where nasality spreads leftwards to these same seg- 
ments. This seems to provide the best evidence for [consonantal] 
since nasal spread in these languages groups together all of the puta- 
tively [-consonantal] segments. We know of no other cases where 
vowels, glides and laryngeals appear to function as a natural class. 

(26) ARABELA (Rich 1963) 

/maanu/ [maanu?] 'woodpecker' 

/nuwa/ [nuwa?] 'partridge' 

/nyaari/ [nysaeri?] 'he laid it down' 

/tinyakari/ [tinyakari?] 'afternoon' 

WARAO (Osborn 1966) 

/inawaha/ [inawaKa] 'summer' 

/moaupu/ [moaupu] give them to him!' 

/mehokohi/ [mefiokohi] 'shadow' 

CAPANAHUA (Loos 1969) 

/boon/ [boo] 'hair' 

/bawin/ [bawf] 'catfish' 

/ci?in/ [ciTTl 'by fire' 

/ciponki/ [cipoT]ki] 'downriver' 

/waran/ [wara] 'squash' 

Our survey of nasalization processes reveals a hierarchy of 
nasalizable segments. In Arabela, Warao and Capanahua, as we have 
seen, vowels and glides nasalize. In Urhobo (Kelly 1969 and p.c), 
nasality spreads to all approximants, that is vowels, glides (including 
the labial approximant j3)^ and liquids excluding voiceless [r]. 

(27) /iwewuye/ [iwewuye] 'grated material' 
/eroPo/ [ero|5o] 'brass' 

/ozu/ [ozu] 'palm-wine' 

/evun/ [evu] 'belly' 

/erere/ [erere] 'anthill' 

/a mare/ [omare] 'old man' 

Hume & Odden: Contra [consonantal] 255 

In Terena, nasalization proceeds through all segments except obstru- 
ents (Bendor-Samuel 1960). A 1 sg. pronoun is marked by prefixa- 
tion of a nasalization feature which spreads until it encounters an 

(28) emo?u 

'his word' 





'his brother' 





'his house' 

ow or)g u 



In Applecross Gaelic all segments except obstruent stops can nasalize 
(van der Hulst & Smith 1983).^ 

(29) /sene.var/ [sene.var] 'grandmother' 
/t^rTisar/ [t^rlTsar] 'plate' 
/sNanydyan/ [sNanydyan] 'thread' 
/k'^oispaxk/ [k'^oispaxk] 'wasp' 

In other words, there is a scale of susceptibility to nasalization 
that is reminiscent of the sonority scale. 

(30) Vowel, laryngeal, glide > liquid > sonorant > fricative 

However, when viewed in terms of sonority, a problem arises when 
we consider the role of laryngeals. While they pattern with vowels 
and glides in being maximally susceptible to nasalization, they are 
not themselves high sonority segments. 

Though sonority calculations have not always included 
[consonantal] — see Steriade 1982 — certain works such as Levin 1985, 
Clements 1990b and Zee 1988 invoke [consonantal] or its converse 
[vocoid] in calculating sonority. This can be seen in (31) from Zee 
1988 where [-consonantal] makes vowels and glides more sonorous 
than liquids, nasals and obstruents. 

(31) O < N < L < V 

+ -I- approximant 

+ + + sonorant 

Yet, constructing the hierarchy in terms of [consonantal] implies that 
the laryngeals /h/ and /?/ would be high-sonority items. The litera- 
ture on sonority is conspicuously quiet on where laryngeals should 
fit. One empirical test for sonority is fitness-for-peakhood: more 
sonorous segments are most likely to be syllable peaks and less son- 
orous segments are least likely to be peaks. We know of no case 
where laryngeals are peaks. 

We offer a reconstruction of sonority which, we show, correctly 
ranks sounds according to the observed hierarchy in (30). Further- 
more, this is done with no reference to [consonantal]. Following 
Clements and Zee, we distinguish between the classes vowel and 
glide, liquid, nasal, and obstruent, with obstruents further divided 
into fricatives and stops. As in these works, the presence of certain 
features contributes to the sonority of segments. 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

Our reconstruction of the hierarchy reinterprets sonority in 
terms of the notion IMPEDANCE, which is the resistance offered by a 
sound to the flow of air through the vocal tract, defined to exclude 
the larynx. Impedance is roughly the converse of sonority. This 
change in terminology is paired with a change in conception, and it 
entails an empirical dividend. Our claim is that certain properties in- 
herently increase the impedance of a sound, and these properties are 
weighted. This is spelled out in (32) where right-branch elements 
have greater impedance than left-branch elements, and impedance 
decreases as you move down the hierarchy. As can be seen, being an 
obstruent contributes significantly to impedance; being a noncontin- 
uant contributes, though less so; having a C-place articulation con- 
tributes a bit to impedance and having a Vocalic constriction con- 
tributes very little. As a result, laryngeals have no impedance. 



[-cont] obstruents 






continuant sonorant stops fricatives stops 

2 3 4 5 

Linguistic generalizations stated in terms of high sonority are 
stated in terms of low impedance. Laryngeals have a special status 
since they have zero impedance, thus, thinking in terms of sonority, 
sonority would be undefined for them. Our typology of syllable peaks 
is that they are required to have some impedance value, which must 
not exceed a certain language-specific maximum. Thus laryngeals 
cannot be syllable peaks. We claim that variation in nasalization is 
also stated in terms of impedance, such that the target of nasalization 
cannot have an impedance greater than some language-specific max- 
imum. Laryngeals and vocoids are thus most susceptible to nasaliza- 
tion, since they will generally not exceed that value. ^ 

4. Phonemic contrasts 

Thus far we have shown that reference to the feature 
[consonantal] is unnecessary in describing changes that a sound or 
class of sounds undergoes, or in describing sounds as a natural class. 
The final class of evidence we examine concerns the question of 
whether [consonantal] is necessary for characterizing existing 
phonemic contrasts. Once again, our conclusion will be that it is not. 

Hume & Odden: Contra [consonantal] 


Since, as shown in (33), languages contrast oral and nasal vow- 
els, or front round and unrounded vowels, or voiced and voiceless 
consonants, or homorganic fricatives and stops, distinctive feature 
theory must include features such as [nasal], [labial], [voice] and 

(33) Nasalization (Yoruba) 





Rounding (French) 





Voicing (English) 



Continuant (English) 



The same cannot be said about [consonantal]. In the realm of vowels, 
no language has [-consonantal] vowels contrasting with [-i-consonan- 
tal] vowels, and we have a hard time imagining what a [-f-consonantal] 
vowel would be. Furthermore, it is tautological that languages cannot 
exploit a consonantal contrast with laryngeals, since [-(-consonantal] 
segments require a particular degree of supraglottal constriction, and 
laryngeals necessarily have no supraglottal constriction. Thus, certain 
contrasts simply aren't attested, while those that seem to exist, can 
be handled by other features. That is, unlike [nasal] or [continuant], 
[consonantal] never functions as the sole feature responsible for dis- 
tinguishing segments. For example, as (34) indicates, the contrast 
between the labial glide [w] and the bilabial fricative [p] can be ex- 
pressed on the basis of the feature [sonorant].'" Similarly, the palatal 
glide [j] and the palatal approximant [X] can be distinguished by the 
feature [lateral]. In short, [consonantal] is not critical to the represen- 
tation of phonemic contrasts. 


_ w _ 



^ y - 




^ P - 


5. Conclusion 

As we have argued here, in no case is reference to [consonantal] 
crucial. Based on these and other findings, we conclude that the fea- 
ture [consonantal] is superfluous and therefore can be eliminated 
from feature theory. 

258 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 


* We would like to thank Abigail Cohn, Ellen Kaisse, John Kelly, 
Patrick McConvell, Paul Newman and Glynn Piggott for discussion 
and examples which are relevant to this paper. 

' Payne 1981 describes [w] as a bilabial approximant, lacking / | 
velar constriction. ^ 

2 One might expect the velar k to lenite to a velar approximant y. { 
Such a segment does exist in Axininca Campa, but as noted in Black 
1991, 7 cannot be morpheme initial and may only be preceded by a 
low vowel. Thus y cannot appear in root initial position, and in its 
place one finds the nearest approximant, y. 

3 Two other processes affect these examples. Final vowels may 
be deleted as long as a consonant cluster does not result, as in rjarak 
from underlying rjaraku. In addition, there is a process of degem- 
ination applying to gaalumayu, from gaalumayyu. 

4 It is possible that there are two lenition rules with different 
conditions, the one affecting /t/ being more restricted. 

5 In all cases that we are aware of, this could equally well be 
described as spreading of [sonorant] since the triggering segment is 
always a sonorant, though following McCarthy 1988, we avoid doing 
so since there is little evidence that [sonorant] spreads. 

6 Spreading of [continuant] would not be appropriate, since that 
would not explain the change of the fricatives /s/ and /z/ to [r] (a 
continuant r) and / to w . We do not assume that this involves 
spreading [sonorant] from the preceding vowel. 

7 We assume that the contrast between w and the bilabial 
approximant that Kelly 1969 transcribes as /J, which we treat as both 
[+sonorant] owing to their nasalizability, is that Labial in w is dom- 
inated by Vocalic, whereas in (5 it is dominated by C-place: see 
Clements & Hume 1995 for discussion of that contrast; see Herman 
(this volume) for discussion of a similar structure in Karuk where, 
however, the two segments are phonetically identical. 

8 The vowels a, e and o also do not nasalize; this restriction we 

do not attribute to sonority, but suspect is due to a perceptual con- ^ 
straint. {n. 

9 Cohn (1993) notes that nasal spread in Sundanese targets ~ 
vowels and laryngeals, but not the glides w and >'. She proposes that 
glides in Sundanese be specified as [+consonantal]: our account of this 
assigns the place features of glides in Sundanese to C-place, and thus 
glides have a higher impedance than laryngeals and vowels. 

10 Or, as indicated in note 7, the distinction may also be 
rendered in terms of C-place versus vocalic features. 

Hume & Odden: Contra [consonantal] 259 


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Studies in the Linguistics Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Jongho Jun 
University of California, Los Angeles 

Attested patterns of place assimilation display vari- 
ability in targets, triggers, and domains. However, crosslin- 
guistic generalizations about place assimilations show that 
certain constraints govern the range of variability. The pur- 
pose of the present study is to provide an explicit formal 
analysis of such variable, but constrained, patterns of place 
assimilation. More specifically, within the framework of 
Optimality Theory (Prince & Smolensky 1993, McCarthy & 
Prince 1993), I propose several sets of functionally and 
physically motivated constraints and their universal 

1. Introduction 

There are three criteria for classifying place assimilations. First, 
place assimilations can be classified as either local or non-local de- 
pending on whether they occur between adjacent or non-adjacent 
segments. Second, place assimilations can be either regressive or 
progressive depending on the direction of spreading. Finally, place 
assimilations can occur either within the same articulator or across 
articulators. In this paper, I focus on local, regressive, crossarticula- 
tory assimilations, although reference to other types will be made 
when necessary. 

It has been observed that targets, triggers, and domains of place 
assimilation vary across languages (Mohanan 1993). For instance, 
variability in target can be seen in English, Korean, and Labrador 
Eskimo. In English, only coronal stops are targets of place assimila- 
tion; in Korean, not only coronals but also labials are targets (Kim- 
Renaud 1974 and Cho 1990, among others); in Labrador Eskimo, con- 
sonants of all places can be targets (Smith 1979). Such variability has 
been an obstacle in providing an explicit formal analysis of place as- 
similation typology. However, the following cross-linguistic general- 
izations show that certain constraints govern the range of variability 
(Mohanan 1993, Ohala 1990): 

(1) a. Stops are more likely targets than fricatives. 

b. Nasals are more likely targets than stops. 

c. Coronals are more likely targets than non-coronals. 

d. Non-coronals arc more likely triggers than coronals. 

e. Stops are more likely triggers than nasals. 

f. Codas are more likely targets than onsets. 

264 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

In (1), interesting acoustic correlations can be observed: more likely 
targets are acoustically weaker than less likely ones, whereas more 
likely triggers are acoustically stronger than less likely ones. For in- 
stance, regarding (la,b) fricatives in general have stronger place cues 
than stops (Kohler 1991:189); and in turn, stops have stronger cues 
than nasals (Ohala 1990:261 citing House 1957 and Malecot 1956). 

Why should place assimilation typology have such parallel rela- 
tions with acoustic properties? To answer this question, we need to 
consider the motivation for place assimilation in general. It has been 
most commonly assumed that the motivation for place assimila- 
tion is EASE OF ARTICULATION, although as Ohala (1990:260) points out, 
'the notion of "ease" or "simplicity" has never been satisfactorily de- 
fined'. But, what could be the motivation for the non-occurrence of 
place assimilation? Obviously, not every language displays conso- 
nant place assimilation; not every consonant cluster is subject to 
place assimilation. Why are some underlying sequences preserved, 
resisting weakening due to 'ease of articulation'? The plausible func- 
tional explanation is certainly EASE OF PERCEPTION, i.e. maintaining 
contrasts. The more alike underlying and surface forms, the easier its 
perception. If heterorganic consonant clusters undergo full place as- 
similation, they run the risk of neutralizing with underlyingly gemi- 
nates, causing problems in recoverability. Thus, effort for obtaining 
an easy, or maximum, perception resists place assimilation. 

Now, what kind of segment occurring in target position needs to 
be preserved for maintenance of contrasts? And, what kind of seg- 
ment had better be weakened for minimization of articulatory effort, 
losing contrasts? What is the criterion for preserving and weakening 
a segment? I assume that acoustic salience is the decisive criterion, 
following the hypothesis in (2) which has been discussed and claimed 
by Kohler (1990, 1991, 1992), Steriade (1993), and Byrd (1994): 

(2) Production Hypothesis 

Speakers make more effort to preserve the articulation of 
speech sounds with powerful acoustic cues, whereas they relax 
their articulation of sounds with weak cues. 

According to the hypothesis in (2), which I call the Production Hy- 
pothesis, speakers are reluctant to exert effort on an acoustically 
weak segment since its preservation would not be very helpful for 
its perception; but speakers are eager to exert effort on an acousti- 
cally salient segment since the effort crucially enhances the percep- 
tibility of the segment. In other words, speakers make more effort 
for those sounds which will produce dividends in terms of enhanced 

From (2), the answer to the question given above (i.e. why does 
place assimilation typology have such parallel relations with acoustic 
properties?) can follow. Since consonants with weak acoustic cues are 
more likely subject to weakening processes, they are more likely tar- 
gets of place assimilation. In contrast, consonants with strong cues 


Jun: A constraint-based analysis of place assimilation typology 265 

are rarely subject to weakening, resisting place assimilation. Con- 
cerning triggers of place assimilation, since consonants with strong 
acoustic energy can make the adjacent consonant acoustically 
weaker, the adjacent consonant can be targeted in place assimilation. 
Thus, consonants with strong cues can be more likely triggers than 
those with weak cues. 

Consequently, the variable, but constrained, patterns observed 
in place assimilation typology result from diverse ways of reconciling 
two conflicting demands. EASE OF ARTICULATION and EASE OF PERCEPTION; 
the reconciliation is determined on the basis of the acoustic salience. 
Therefore, to account for universal patterns of place assimilation, we 
must explore physiological and functional components which con- 
spire to satisfy these two conflicting goals. More specifically, within 
the framework of Optimality Theory (Prince & Smolensky 1993; 
McCarthy & Prince 1993), I first provide two main groups of univer- 
sal constraints which are motivated by the physical properties of the 
speech mechanism. Each group of constraints is guided by one of the 
two conflicting goals, ease of articulation and perception; the first one 
will be called Weakening constraints and the second one Preser- 
vation constraints. Each group can be divided into several sets of 
constraints on the basis of criteria such as place, manner, and 
prosodic domain. 

2. Weakening 

Place assimilation in consonant clusters can be decomposed into 
two parts, deletion of target segment (3a) and lengthening of trigger 
segment (3b): 

(3) C1C2 -^ C2C2 

a. Ci ^ 

b. C2 — > C2C2 

I assume that different deletion mechanisms operate in different 
types of place assimilation — gradient vs. categorical. In this section, 1 
mainly discuss deletion of target in place assimilation. Based on ex- 
perimental studies on gradient place assimilation (Nolan 1992. Jun 
1994), in this section I claim that the articulatory process which per- 
ceptually deletes target consonants in gradient place assimilation is 
the reduction in spatio-temporal magnitude of the target gesture. I 
then argue that the articulatory process which leads to categorical 
change in place assimilation is the deletion of the target gesture. 
Finally, I propose constraints which govern the weakening processes 
in place assimilation. 

2.1 Gradient place assimilation 

Gradient place assimilation is typically postlexical; it applies in 
casual speech, and it is optional. For instance, English coronals assimi- 
late in place to a following non-coronal across word boundaries: e.g. 
/leyt kis/ -> [leyk kis] 'late kiss'. This alternation does not occur all 
the time with all speakers. Its occurrence is subject to the speed and 

266 Studies in tlie Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

style of speech: it is more common in casual, fast speech than in for- 
mal, slow speech. In addition, as shown in many studies (Barry 1985, 
1991; Browman & Goldstein 1990; Nolan 1992; and Byrd 1994), 
residual gestures of target coronals are often observed. This gradient 
alternation is beyond the scope of phonological theories such as clas- 
sical generative phonology, autosegmental phonology and under- 
specification in which segmental and featural changes are repre- 
sented in a categorical way. (See Barry 1985, 1991; Nolan 1992; and 
Zsiga 1993 for the relevant discussion.) 

Let us now consider what articulatory process yields gradient 
place assimilation. More specifically, what articulatory process can 
perceptually delete target consonants in a gradual way? 1 believe 
that gestural reduction is the articulatory process which perceptually 
deletes target segments, based on the findings of Nolan (1992) and 
Jun (1994). 

To investigate the distinct roles of gestural reduction and over- 
lap in place assimilation, Jun (1994) measured oral pressure during 
the production of pk clusters in Korean and English.' In both lan- 
guages, coronals assimilate in place to a following consonant, but only 
in Korean do labials also assimilate to a following velar. The results of 
the production test show that (i) Korean speakers often reduce the 
labial coda in pk clusters, but English speakers do not; (ii) both 
Korean and English pk clusters are mostly highly overlapped; and 
(iii) Korean speakers do not reduce the labial coda in pt clusters. In 
its related perception test, it was found that pk clusters are rarely 
perceived as assimilated even with a marked overlap, unless p is re- 
duced. These findings suggest that gestural reduction is the main 
factor giving rise to place assimilation, and that the reduction process 
must be speaker-controlled. 

The results of these oral pressure experiments are consistent 
with those of Nolan's (1992) experiments on English alveolar place 
assimilation. Nolan's experiments support the hypothesis that gestu- 
ral reduction is the main factor giving rise to place assimilation, by 
showing that in English alveolar place assimilation, extents in reduc- 
tion of the alveolar closure govern the perception of assimilation. 
Also, as place assimilation is not universal, but variable across lan- 
guages, Nolan argues that place assimilation is 'a phenomenon over 
which speakers have control'. 

Based on the results of these experiments, it seems clear that 
gestural reduction is the articulatory process which perceptually 
deletes the target segment in casual speech place assimilation, and 
that it must be speaker-controlled. 

2.2 Categorical place assimilation 

In the previous section we concluded that gestural reduction is 
responsible for the (perceptual) deletion of the target segment in 
gradient place assimilation. In this section, I discuss what process is 

Jun: A constraint-based analysis of place assimilation typology 267 

responsible for the deletion of the target segment in categorical place 
assimilation. Unlike gradient place assimilation, categorical place as- 
similation is typically obligatory and lexical: in the change C1C2 -> 
C2C2, no residual gesture of the target consonant Ci can be observed. 
Thus, based on the total absence of target gesture at surface, it seems 
that deletion, not reduction, of the gesture plays a role in deleting the 
target segment in place assimilation. 

In summary, gestural reduction is the articulatory process 
which (perceptually) deletes the target segment in gradient place as- 
similation, whereas in categorical place assimilation, gestural deletion 
deletes the target segment. In other words, gestural reduction and 
deletion demonstrate the same effect — namely, deletion of the target 
segment in place assimilation — to different degrees. 

2.3 Weakening constraints 

In this section, I provide weakening constraints, which formalize 
the notion of minimization of articulatory effort. As discussed in sec- 
tion 2.1, I assume that the main articulatory process of gradient 
place assimilation is the spatio-temporal reduction of target gesture. 
This reduction process itself is not confined to place assimilation. 
Independent of place assimilation, consonantal gestures typically re- 
duce in both magnitude and time in fast, casual speech (Gay 1981). 
Variability of consonant reduction depending on the speed and style 
of speech seems to parallel gradiency of consonant place assimilation 
which also depends on speed and style of speech. Thus, we may 
plausibly assume that gestural reduction which yields place assimi- 
lation is a subset case of the general consonantal reduction process. I 
now propose the following constraint which characterizes the general 
reduction process of consonantal gestures: 

(4) Reduction Constraint 

Red(C): Form as reduced a constriction as possible depending 
on speech rate and style. 

The constraint Red(C), which has the effect of reducing the magni- 
tude of target gesture, is responsible for gradient gestural reduction 
and, indirectly, for gradient place assimilation. 

As discussed in section 2.2, I assume that the lexical counterpart 
of gestural reduction is the deletion of the target gesture. Thus, the 
following deletion constraint is responsible for place neutralization 
and, indirectly, categorical place assimilation: 

(5) Deletion Constraint 

Del(C): Form no constriction at all. 

In the following section, I provide preservation constraints 
which conflict with the proposed weakening constraints, while dis- 
cussing the acoustic facts observed in place assimilation typology. 

268 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

3. Preservation constraints 

Recall that the Production Hypothesis claims that speakers make 
more effort to preserve the articulation of acoustically stronger 
sounds. Based on this hypothesis, I propose the following general 
preservation constraint: 

(6) Pres(Art): The magnitude of a constriction is preserved 

Universal ranking: Pres(Artl) >> Pres(Art2), where the acoustic 
cues for Artl are stronger than those for Art2. 

Thus, preservation constraints for consonantal gestures with strong 
acoustic cues are more highly ranked than those with weak cues. In 
the following sections, with the above general format at hand, I pro- 
vide the sets of preservation constraints which can be classified by 
several categories, while discussing the hierarchy in the acoustic 
effects within each category. 

3.1 Manner constraints 

In this section, I discuss the acoustic hierarchy of fricatives, 
stops and nasals when they are the first constituent of a consonant 
cluster. Let us first consider the acoustic structure of fricatives and 
stops. As shown in Borden & Harris (1984:193, Figure 5.20), for frica- 
tives and stops, the prominent place cues are the formant (mainly 
F2) transition of the neighboring vowel and the frequency of the 
noise components: the noise component of fricatives is friction, and 
that of stops is the release burst. In the consonant cluster C1C2, if Ci 
is a stop, it is typically unreleased due to overlap with C2. Unreleased 
stops lack the place cues which bursts provide. Thus, formant transi- 
tions in the preceding vowel will be the only available place cue for 
stops. In contrast, if C] is a fricative, in addition to the F2 transition 
there are place cues in the friction even under its overlap with C2: a 
short period of non-overlapping frication at the beginning of the 
fricative articulation will provide place cues for the fricative. Thus, 
fricatives have more robust place cues than stops. 

For nasals, the prominent place cue is the formant transitions of 
the neighboring vowel (Malecot 1956; Nord 1976; Borden & Harris 
1984). 2 The acoustics of nasal consonants is characterized by reso- 
nance of the pharyngeal and nasal cavities, and antiresonances of the 
oral cavity. (See Borden & Harris 1984; Ohala & Ohala 1993:233-4.) 
The resonance is low, below 500 Hz (Borden & Harris 1984:180). 
And, resonance and antiresonance may cancel each other out if close 
in frequency. Thus, 'the obvious change in spectrum from an orally 
produced vowel to a nasal includes. ..a weakening of the upper for- 
mants [F2,3,...]' (Borden & Harris 1984:180). Such weakening of the 
upper formants can lead to weakening of place cues for the following 
nasal, implying that nasals have weak place cues in the formant 
transitions of the neighboring vowel, in comparison with stops. 

More directly relevant data is found in Malecot (1956). Malecot 
carries out a perception test employing a tape-splicing technique. He 

Jun: A constraint-based analysis of place assimilation typology 269 

separated and recombined the part for nasal resonance and its 
neighboring vowel of utterances recorded on magnetic tape. From his 
results (his tables 2, 4, and 5), it follows that in combination with 
nasal resonance, the vowel transition of stops dominates the percep- 
tion of place of articulation more consistently than that of nasals. 
This can indicate that the vowel transition of stops is a stronger place 
cue than that of nasals. In summary, nasals have weaker place cues 
than stops, which in turn have weaker cues than fricatives. This hier- 
archy in strength of acoustic cues leads to the following ranking 
among constraints which formulate preservation of constrictions of 
fricatives, stops, and nasals: 

(7) Universal ranking for target manner 

Pres(77T-:C) » Pres(r- — r C) » Pres(7 rC) 

[fric] [stop] inas] ' 

This ranking indirectly captures a cross-linguistic generalization 
about place assimilations — nasals are more likely targets than oral 
stops, which are in turn more likely targets than fricatives. 

3.2 Place constraints 

Let us discuss the acoustic hierarchy among coronals, labials and 
velars when they are unreleased. As discussed above, for unreleased 
stops and nasals the vowel transitions are the primary place cues. It 
has been claimed (Ladefoged 1975 among others) that the vowel 
transitions are smaller for coronals than for velars or labials. This 
suggests that unreleased coronals are acoustically weaker than unre- 
leased velars and labials with respect to place cues. 

Also, there seems to be a difference in robustness of place cues 
between velars and labials. Like coronals, labials' articulator, i.e. the 
lips, are independent of vowels' articulator, i.e. tongue body, whereas 
velars share the articulator with vowels. Thus, the acoustic cues for 
the velars may be overlaid more on the preceding vowel than those 
for labials and coronals. Consequently, velars' place cue of the pre- 
ceding vowel is more robust than labials and coronals. This can be 
implied by the fact (Ladefoged 1975) that 'the formant transitions [in 
velars] take longer than in the corresponding alveolar or bilabial 

In summary, coronals, labials, and dorsals are acoustically strong 
in increasing order when they are unreleased. Based on this acoustic 
hierarchy, 1 propose the following ranking for preservation con- 
straints which formulate the preservation of each place of articu- 

(8) Universal ranking for target places^ 
Pres(dorO) » Pres(labO) » Pres(corO). 

This ranking indicates that unreleased velars are more preserved 
than unreleased labials, which are, in turn, more preserved than un- 
released coronals. It indirectly captures a cross-linguistic generaliza- 

270 Studies in tiie Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

tion on place assimilation — coronals are more likely targets than 
labials, which are, in turn, more likely targets than velars. 

3.3 Prosodic constraints 

Prosodic contexts may affect the strength of the acoustic cues for 
the consonantal place of articulation. As discussed by Ohala 
(1990:261) and Kohler (1990, 1991), the reason why codas are more 
likely targets of place assimilation than onsets is because onset con- 
sonants have stronger place cues than codas. Onsets are released, but 
codas are often unreleased. Thus, acoustic cues to place which are in 
the release are weakened or lost in the unreleased coda. Acoustic 
strength of onsets over codas leads to the following universal ranking 
in constraints which formulate the preservation of codas and onsets: 

(9) Universal ranking for prosodic context 
Pres(onset) >> Pres(coda) 

This ranking indirectly captures a cross-linguistic generalization on 
place assimilations — codas are more likely targets than onsets; in 
other words, regressive place assimilations are much more common 
than progressive ones. 

3.4 Trigger place constraints 

In this section, I discuss the acoustic salience of place cues for 
the first constituent of consonant clusters which vary depending on 
the place of the following consonant. In the consonant cluster C1C2, C2 
of different place may obscure place cues of Ci to different degrees. 
To determine the relative strength of the effect of coronals, labials, 
and velars in obscuring place cues of C], I depend on the following 
speculation. In the sequence V1C1C2, the formant transitions of Vi 
are affected by both Ci and C2, as shown by Byrd (1992) and Zsiga 
(1992), although Ci is in general stronger than C2. Thus, C2, whose 
place cues are robust in the formant transitions, is likely to affect the 
formant transitions of Vi, obscuring place cues of Ci. In other words, 
consonants (C2) which have robust formant transitions can obscure 
Ci's place cues in the formant transitions more than those (C2) which 
have weak transitions. In section 3.2, we saw that unreleased coro- 
nals, labials, and velars have robust place cues in increasing order. 
From this claim, it follows that the place cues of Ci can be obscured 
before coronals, labials, and velars in increasing order. Based on this 
speculation, I claim that consonants have acoustically strong place 
cues before coronals, labials and velars in decreasing order. This 
leads to the following universal ranking in constraints which formu- 
late the preservation of C] before each of coronals, labials and velars: 

(10) Universal ranking for trigger places 

Pres( cor) >> Pres( lab) >> Pres( dor) 

This ranking indicates that consonants are more preserved before 
coronals than before labials; in turn, consonants before labials are 
more preserved than those before velars. Thus this ranking indi- 

Jun: A constraint-based analysis of place assimilation typology 271 

rectly captures a cross-linguistic generalization about place assimila- 
tions: velars are more likely triggers than labials, which are in turn 
more likely triggers than coronals. 

3.5 Trigger manner constraints 

In CiC 2 clusters, the acoustic salience of place cues for C] varies 
depending on the manner of articulation of Cj. Let us compare the 
effect of stops and nasals when they occur as the second constituent 
of a consonant cluster. In the previous section, we saw that in a 
V iC 1C2 sequence, the formant transitions of V] are affected by both 
C] and C2. We might speculate then, that the more robust C2's place 
cues, the more likely its formant transitions will be manifested at Vi 
offset, potentially obscuring those of Ci. Thus, if stops have more ro- 
bust place cues in the formants of neighboring vowels than nasals, it 
follows that the place cues of C] can be more obscured before stops 
than nasals. This leads to the following universal constraint ranking 
in constraints which formulate the preservation of the Ci before 
stops and nasals: 

(11) Universal ranking for trigger manner 
Pres( nas) >> Pres( stop) 

This ranking indicates that consonants before nasals must be more 
preserved than those before stops; thus indirectly capturing a cross- 
linguistic generalization on place assimilations — -stops are more likely 
triggers than nasals. 

4. Maintaining cluster duration 

Not only categorical place assimilations but also gradient ones 
have been assumed in the literature to display compensatory length- 
ening of the target segment, as suggested by descriptions of gradient 
assimilations: e.g. 'late kiss' /leyt kis/ -^ [leyk kis]. This lengthening 
of the target segment in gradient place assimilation has been demon- 
strated by Barry's (1991) electropalatographic study on English 
postlexical place assimilation. 

What could be the motivation for this compensatory lengthen- 
ing? Compensatory lengthening found in gradient place assimilation 
is different from that found in categorical place assimilation due to 
the gradient reduction of the target segment. Nonetheless, as the 
term 'compensatory lengthening' suggests, both types have the same 
goal, i.e. maintaining cluster duration. More specifically, I believe 
that compensatory lengthening of place assimilation is the result of 
maintaining the canonical duration of the consonant cluster, for the 
purpose of cueing the underlying length status. Based on the dura- 
tion of the underlying cluster, listeners may figure out that the ut- 
tered long trigger segment is not a single segment. They may further 
guess the correct underlying heterorganic cluster, probably with the 
aid of their native knowledge of common consonant weakening. I 
now provide the following constraint which is responsible for 
maintaining the canonical duration of consonant clusters: 

272 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

(12) Constraint for maintaining cluster duration 

MnDur(clst): Maintain the canonical duration of the underlying 
consonant cluster 

To obey this constraint, C2 in a C1C2 cluster lengthens as C] reduces. 
Thus, the constraint (12) is indirectly responsible for compensatory 
lengthening of place assimilation. 

Thus far, 1 have provided several sets of constraints. Each set 
inherently ranked according to acoustic effects. This ranking is uni- 
versal; it cannot be altered. What can change is not ranking within a 
set of constraints classified by the same criterion, but the interaction 
among sets of constraints, each of which is classified by different 
criteria. Consequently, actual patterns of place assimilation will be 
determined by the interaction of sets of constraints, maintaining the 
universal ranking within each set. 

5. An analysis of Korean place assimilation 

In this section, with constraints and their universal rankings 
proposed in previous sections, I provide an analysis of Korean place 
assimilation. In Korean, coronals assimilate in place to the following 
labials and velars, and in addition, labials assimilate in place only to 

(13) Korean consonant place assimilations'* 

a. /mit + ko/ -^ [mikko] 'believe and' 

b. /cinan+pam/ -^ [cinampam] 'last night' 

c. /ip + ko/ -^ [ikko] 'wear and' 

d. /ip + ta/ -^ [ipta] *[itta] 'wear + SE'5 

e. /ik + ta/ -^ [ikta] *[itta] 'ripe + SE' 

f. /kuk + pota/ -^ [kukpota] *[kuppota] '(more) than soup' 

It has been assumed in the literature (Kim-Renaud 1974; Cho 1990 
among others) that Korean place assimilation is an optional, and it 
applies in casual speech. Supporting this assumption, the results of 
Jun's (in prep.) experiments show that the labial reduction giving rise 
to place assimilation is basically partial and it can apply across word 
boundaries (14) but not in the prepausal position (15). 

(14) Across word boundaries 

a. /ip kalita/ -^ [ik kalita] 
mouth hide 

'(Somebody) hides his/her mouth' 

b. /cip kuhata/ -^ [cik kuhata] 
house get 

'(Somebody) gets a house' 

(15) Prepausal position 

a. /ip/ -^ [ip] *[iP] 'mouth' 

b. /cip/ -^ [cip] *[ciP] 'house' 

Jun: A constraint-based analysis of place assimilation typology 


Thus, I assume that Korean place assimilation is a gradient 
postlexical process which result from the gestural reduction of coro- 
nals before noncoronals, and labials before velars. To deal with the 
Korean data, a general constraint for preserving codas needs to be 
divided into more specific constraints: 

(16) Preserve coda constraints (New) 
Pres(_%) » Pres(_C) 

[% denotes a pause; Preservation of constrictions of a prepausal 
coda is more highly ranked than that of a coda followed by 
another consonant] 

The above ranking falls out from the acoustic fact that a coda fol- 
lowed by another consonant has acoustically weaker place cues due 
to the overlap with C2 than a prepausal coda. 

The ranking of the complete set of constraints which are pro- 
posed for Korean place assimilation is in (17). 

(17) Ranking for Korean place assimilation 

MnDur(clst), Pres(onset), Pres( %), Pres(dorO), Pres( cor) 

» Red(C) >> 

Pres(labO), Pres(corO), Pres(__lab), Pres(_dor), Pres(_C) 

According to the proposed ranking for Korean place assimilation, 
both coronals and labials can be reduced in pre-consonantal coda 
position, since Pres(labO) and Pres(corO) are ranked below Red(C) 

with Pres( C). But, in addition to velars, labials do not reduce before 

coronals since Pres( cor) is ranked above Red(C). Thus, this relative 

ranking captures the different patterns of reduction between coro- 
nals and labials in Korean place assimilation. Notice that all universal 
rankings within a set of constraints are obeyed in (17). Based on the 
above ranking, I analyze /tk/ -^ [^K] as shown in the following 

(In the tableaux below, only medial consonant clusters arc consid- 
ered in assessing violations of constraints. The following notations 
are employed: superscripted letter for a segment indicates its re- 
duced counterpart; capital letter for a segment indicates a gesture 
lengthening; arrow indicates an optimal output; weak vertical line 
indicates a tie in ranking) 


-^ [it Kol 





Pres( C) 


it ko 











it ^0 




IT ^^o 



i' l^o 





Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

Notice that the actual output is that which best satisfies the con- 
straints. When t is sufficiently reduced, the output will be heard as 

Labials' assimilation to a following velar is shown in the 
following tableau: 

(19 ) /ip + ko/ • ^ [iPKol 






( dor) 



ip ko 


iP Ko 





iP ko 



Notice that labials before velars need to be reduced to obey Red(C); 
this reduction violates only constraints which are ranked below 

Now we are in a position to consider cases in which place assimi- 
lation does not apply. The following tableau illustrates why labials do 
not reduce before coronals: 

(20) /ip + ta/ 




Pres( cor) 









iP ta 




This analysis captures the fact confirmed by Jun's (1994) experi- 
ments that labials do not reduce before coronals. Notice that the 
constraint Pres(_cor) plays the main role in preventing the reduction 
of labials before coronals. The case in which velars do not reduce 
before coronals is subject to the same mechanism. However, velars 
do not reduce before labials: 

(21) /kuk+pota/ 

[kuk pota1 







kuk pota 


kuk Pota 




kuK Pota 



Finally, the tableau in (22) illustrates the analysis of a pre- 
pausal coda: 

(22) Zip/ ^ rip1 


Pres( %) 



Pres( C) 






According to the ranking for Korean place assimilation (17), labials 
may reduce before a consonant, since both Pres(labO) and Pres(_C) 
are ranked below Red(C). However, due to the high ranked Pres(_%), 
an output with a reduced prepausal labial is not optimal. This analy- 

Jun: A constraint-based analysis of place assimilation typology 275 

sis captures the fact that Korean coda consonants do not reduce in 
prepausal position. 

In conclusion, I have provided an explicit, formal analysis of 
Korean place assimilation by proposing a single ranking of con- 
straints in (17) which obeys all the universal rankings within each 
set of constraints. 

6. Conclusion 

The present study provides an in-depth discussion of perceptual 
and articulatory mechanisms in speech production, which enables us 
to employ independently motivated constraints in an analysis of 
place assimilation. 


* I would like to thank Bruce Hayes, Ian Maddieson, Pat Keating, 
and Donca Steriade for their valuable advice and suggestions. I also 
thank Dan Silverman for valuable comments and proofreading. In 
addition, this paper has benefited from helpful comments from Dani 
Byrd, Edward Flemming, Chris Colston, Sun-Ah Jun, Abby Kaun, Peter 
Ladefoged, Peggy MacEachern, Richard Wright, and the audience at 
FLSM 5. 

' Oral pressure refers to suprapharyngeal pressure, which was 
recorded behind lips. 

2 Kurowski & Blumstein (1984) claim that the place cues of the 
nasal murmur are as effective as vowel transitions in conveying 
place information. However, they deal with NV sequences, not VN. As 
far as we are concerned with VC sequences, Malecot (1956), Nord 
(1976), Repp & Svastikula (1988) show that the vowel transition is 
very dominant place cues, as compared to the murmur. 

3 The superscripted indicates UNRELEASED. 

^ Broad phonetic transcriptions are employed for Korean exam- 
ples. Actual phonetic forms will be outputs of a regular process of 
Korean post-obstruent fortition in which lenis obstruents become 
fortis after an obstruent. See Kim-Renaud (1986) for more details 
about this regular process in Korean. 

5 SE represents Sentence Ender. 


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viewpoint on 'Articulatory Phonology'. Phonetica 49:205-211. 

KUROWSKI, Kathleen, & Sheila Blumstein. 1984. Perceptual integration 
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Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 




Mark Kas & Frans Zwarts 
University of Groningen 

It is known that intervening constituents may affect 
the licensing relation between negative polarity items 
(NPIs) and monotone decreasing elements. These facts can 
be accounted for by means of a simple monotonicity calculus 
which allows us to compute mechanically the semantic value 
of any chain of composed expressions. In order to deal ade- 
quately with the distribution of NPIs in languages like 
German and Dutch, this calculus must be extended to certain 
subsets of the class of monotonic elements. In addition, it 
can be shown that we must make a distinction between 
maximal and non-maximal compositions. 

1. Introduction 

It is well-known that negative polarity items (NPIs) can be licensed 
by a variety of constituents, which appear to have in common that 
they are associated with a monotone decreasing function as their se- 
mantic value. Typical examples are the sentences in (1). where the 
NPI any credit is triggered by the downward monotonic expressions 
no critic and few writers. ' 

(1) a. No critic gives a writer any credit. 

b. Some critics give few writers any credit. 

Less known is the fact that intervening constituents may affect 
the licensing relation. As is illustrated by the contrast in (2), the oc- 
currence of a definite determiner in the chain between the NPI 
(anyone) and the trigger (never) is potentially damaging to the out- 

(2) a. I never met a critic who anyone tried to kill. 

b. *I never met the critic who anyone tried to kill. 

On the basis of earlier work by Van Benthem (1986; 1991), Kas 
(1993), Sanchez Valencia (1991), and Zwarts (1991), we will argue 
that these facts can be accounted for by means of what we shall refer 
to as the Monotonicity Calculus (MC). 

2. The Monotonicity Calculus 

In order to deal adequately with the distribution of NPIs, we must be 
able to compute the monotonicity properties of the linguistic context. 
This is necessary because it can be shown that an NPI only leads to 
an acceptable result if it is the argument of a monotone decreasing 
expression. One of the consequences of such a view is that the noun 

280 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2(1 994) 

phrase few congressmen in the sentence Few congressmen attended 
any of the meetings cannot be regarded as the licensing expression. 
Instead, the sentence must be analyzed in such a way that the well- 
formed occurrence of the phrase any of the meetings can be at- 
tributed to the logical properties of the complex expression few con- 
gressmen attended. To this end, we will make use of the device of 
function composition, which enables us to analyze compound expres- 
sions as the combination of two or more simpler expressions. As an 
illustration, consider the derivation in (3) which combines few con- 
gressmen and attended in such a way that the result is a composite 
function whose domain is the set of NPs and whose value at any ex- 
pression of this type is S. 

(3) Few congressmen attended any of the meetings 



This way of portraying the matter is logically meaningful, be- 
cause it has been argued by Partee & Rooth (1983) and Keenan & 
Faltz (1985) that extensional transitive verbs invariably receive ho- 
momorphic functions as their semantic values. Since any homomor- 
phism is upward monotonic, it becomes possible to analyze the com- 
pound expression few congressmen attended as the composition of a 
monotone decreasing expression (few congressmen) and a monotone 
increasing expression (attended). In view of the next theorem, this 
means that the whole expression few congressmen attended is 
monotone decreasing in nature. 

(4) Theorem 

Let B, B* and B** be three Boolean algebras and let /.• B ^ B* 
and g: B* — > B**. Then: 

a. If/ is monotone increasing and g is monotone decreasing, 
then the composition g °/ is monotone decreasing. 

b. If/ is monotone decreasing and g is monotone increasing, 
then the composition g ° f is monotone decreasing. 

In other words, the fact that Few congressmen attended any of 
the meetings is a well-formed sentence must be attributed to the cir- 
cumstance that the NPI any of the meetings is the argument of the 
monotone decreasing expression few congressmen attended. This 
state of affairs also helps to explain why the conditional in (5) is 

(5) a. Few critics visited a museum — > 

b. Few critics visited a modern museum 

Since the quantifier associated with a modern museum is a sub- 
set of the one associated with a museum, the downward monotonic 
nature of few critics visited allows us to pass from (5a) to (5b). 

Kas & Zwarts: Intervention phenomena 


The ungrammaticality of *Many congressmen attended any of 
the meetings, on the other hand, is a consequence of the monotone 
increasing nature of the expressions many congressmen and at- 
tended. In view of the theorem below, what this means is that the 
composite expression few congressmen attended is monotone in- 
creasing as well. 

(6) Theorem 

Let B, B* and B** be three Boolean algebras and let /: B -^ B* 
and g: B* — > B**. Then: 

a. If/ and g are both monotone increasing, then the composi- 
tion g °f is monotone increasing. 

b. If/ and g are both monotone decreasing, then the composi- 
tion g ° f is monotone increasing. 

This prevents the NPI any of the meetings from being analyzed 
as the argument of a monotone decreasing expression. As a corollary, 
we also have the invalidity of the conditional in (7). 

(7) a. Many critics visited a museum -h 
b. Many critics visited a modern museum 

If we reverse the order of antecedent and consequent, however, 
the resulting proposition is valid, as shown by (8). 

(8) a. Many critics visited a modern museum — > 
b. Many critics visited a museum 

Since the quantifier associated with a museum is a superset of 
the one associated with a modern museum, the upward monotonic 
nature of many critics visited allows us to pass from (8a) to (8b). 

To understand the relationship between monotonicity and func- 
tion composition fully, one does well to take figures 1 and 2 into 

Figure 1 

f g 

f o g 

T T 


T i 


i T 


i i 




X y 


• y 

+ + 


+ - 




- - 


The above two tables clearly show that the behavior of mono- 
tonic functions under composition is comparable to the behavior of 
integers under multiplication. As an illustration of this monotonicity 
calculus, consider the conditionals in (9) and (10). 

(9) a. John didn't see any of the paintings -> 
b. John didn't see any of the modern paintings 

(10) a. John didn't see some of the modern paintings -^ 
b. John didn't see some of the paintings 

282 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

The validity of the entailment in (9) shows that the object noun 
phrase is the argument of a monotone decreasing function. This is not 
the case in (10), where the direction of the conditional inference is in 
fact the opposite of what we saw before. In other words, the object 
noun phrase in (10) must be the argument of a monotone increasing 
function. This can be explained if we assume that the occurrence of 
some of the modern paintings in (10) is the argument of the negative 
transitive verb phrase didn't see. 

Before we address this matter in more detail, we do well to pre- 
sent an analysis of the sentence John didn't see any of the paintings. 
As (11) shows, the negative transitive verb phrase didn't see is re- 
garded as being the result of composing the monotone decreasing 
function didn't and the monotone increasing function see. According 
to the table in figure 1, this compound expression is monotone de- 
creasing in nature. In a similar way, we can use composition to ana- 
lyze the complex phrase John didn't see as the combination of an ex- 
pression which is monotone increasing {John) and one which is 
monotone decreasing {didn't see). The table in figure 1 tells us that 
the result is again a monotone decreasing expression. 

(11) John didn't see any of the paintings 


T i T 



It should now be clear that the expression any of the paintings 
in (11) occurs in a downward monotonic context. Hence, the validity 
of the conditional in (9). 

In order to explain the entailment in (10), we must assume that 
English has not only sentence negation and predicate negation, but 
verb negation as well. From a semantic point of view this is by no 
means implausible, since Partee & Rooth (1983) and Keenan & Faltz 
(1985) have convincingly shown that transitive verbs, viewed as 
homomorphic functions from the algebra of noun phrases to the al- 
gebra of verb phrases, can themselves be regarded as a Boolean al- 
gebra. In practice, what this means is that the result of applying 
negation, regarded as the operation of Boolean complementation, to a 
transitive verb is another transitive verb with the same homomor- 
phic properties as the original one. Thus, an expression such as didn't 
see, analyzed as a negative transitive verb phrase, denotes a homo- 
morphic, hence monotone increasing, function. 

Kas & Zwarts: Intervention phenomena 283 

By means of the semantics just described, we can associate a 
sentence such as John didn't see some of the modern paintings with 
the derivation in (12). Instead of analyzing the negative auxiliary 
didn 't as a verb phrase modifier, we regard it as a modifier of the 
transitive verb see. This prevents us from composing the elements in 
question. The only available option is to apply the monotone decreas- 
ing function associated with didn't to the transitive verb see. Since 
the set of homomorphic functions from noun phrases to verb phrases 
is closed under Boolean complementation, this will give us the 
monotone increasing (more precisely, homomorphic) transitive verb 
phrase didn't see. The next step in the derivation uses the operation 
of function composition to analyze the complex phrase John didn't 
see as the combination of an expression which is monotone increas- 
ing {John) and one which is monotone increasing {didn't see). The 
table in figure 1 tells us that the result is again a monotone increas- 
ing expression. 

(12) John didn't see some of the modern paintings 

S/VP ( (VP/NP) / (VP/NP) ) VP/NP NP 

T i T 





This makes it clear that the noun phrase some of the modern 
paintings in (12) is the argument of a monotone increasing function — 
to wit, the Boolean homomorphism associated with the composite 
function John didn't see. It follows that the conditional in (10) is 

The monotonicity calculus displayed in table 1 enables us to 
compute mechanically the semantic value of any chain of composed 
expressions. To see this, it is sufficient to return to the conditional in 
(5). We have argued that the downward monotonic nature of the 
composite expression few critics visited allows us to pass from Few 
critics visited a museum to Few critics visited a modern museum. 
According to this analysis, the object noun phrase a museum must be 
regarded as the argument of few critics visited. It is also possible, 
however, to analyze the sentence in such a way that the common 
noun museum serves as the argument of the complex expression few 
critics visited a. As (13) shows, the combination of the monotone in- 
creasing determiner a and the monotone decreasing phrase few crit- 
ics visited is an expression which is downward monotonic. 

284 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(13) Few critics visited a museum 

i T T 



The above analysis is consistent with the validity of the condi- 
tional inference in (5). More importantly, it shows that under appro- 
priate conditions the downward monotonic nature of the noun phrase 
few critics is inherited by the complex expression few critics visited 

With the aid of the monotonicity calculus we can also explain 
why certain inferences are blocked. As an illustration, consider the 
conditional below. 

(14) a. Few critics visited the museum -h 
h. Few critics visited the modern museum 

The invalidity of (14) is due to the nonmonotonic nature of the 
definite article the, which causes the entire expression few critics 
visited the to be nonmonotonic. This can be seen in (15), where the 
composition of nonmonotonic the and downward monotonic few crit- 
ics visited yields a nonmonotonic expression. 

(15) Few critics visited the museum 


i T 



The above analysis helps to explain why we cannot legitimately 
pass from (14a) to (14b). It also enables us to account for some of the 
intervention phenomena we have discussed. In particular, the con- 
trast between (2a) and (2b) must be attributed to the fact that the 
nonmonotonic determiner the in */ never met the critic who anyone 
tried to kill prevents the composite expression / never met the critic 
who from inheriting the monotone decreasing nature of the negative 
adverb never. If we look at the derivation in (16), we see that the 
property of downward monotonicity is lost when we combine the 
monotone decreasing expression / never met and the nonmonotonic 
article the. This prevents the NPI anyone in (2b) from producing an 
acceptable result. 

Kas & Zwarts: Intervention phenomena 285 

(16) I never met the critic who 

S/VP VP/VP VP/NP NP/N N/ (N\N) (N\N)/(S/NP) 

T i T - T T 








However, if we replace the definite article in (16) by the mono- 
tone increasing determiner a, the resulting sentence is perfectly 
grammatical (/ never met a critic who anyone tried to kill). On the 
basis of the analysis in (17), it is easy to see why. The monotonicity 
properties associated with met, a, critic, and who enable us to pre- 
serve the information that the composite expression / never met a 
critic who contains a negative element (never). As a consequence, the 
relevant string displays the same monotonicity behavior as the li- 
censing element. This is what makes the NPI anyone possible in (2a). 

(17) I never met a critic who 


T i T T T T 





S/ (N\N) 



The foregoing discussion may easily lead us to believe that the 
arithmetic of monotonic functions is sufficient to account for various 
intervention phenomena. It can be shown, however, that the mono- 

286 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

tonicity calculus must be extended in order to deal adequately with 
the distribution of NPIs. 

3. The Extended Monotonicity Calculus 

As Zwarts (1993) and van der Wouden (1994) show, NPIs can be ei- 
ther of the weak, or of the strong, type. In order to get a clear view 
of the content of this distinction, one does well to take the following 
German examples into consideration. 

(18) a. Hochstens eine Frau wird sich zu verantworten brauchen. 

At most one woman will herself to justify need 

b. Keiner wird solch eine Priifung durchzustehen brauchen. 
No one will such an ordeal to go through need 

(19) a. *Hochstens zehn Kinder haben auch nur irgendetwas 

At most ten children have anything 

b. Keiner von diesen Leuten hat auch nur irgendetwas 
None of these people has anything 

The contrast between (18) and (19) makes it clear that the NPI 
auch nur irgendetwas 'anything (at all)' differs from brauchen 'need' 
in that it is limited to a proper subset of the environments in which 
brauchen can occur. This distinction between weak and strong forms 
of negative polarity appears to correspond with different classes of 
licensing elements. Weak polarity items like brauchen occur when 
there is a monotone decreasing expression in the linguistic context. 
Strong polarity items like auch nur irgendetwas, on the other hand, 
require the presence of a so-called anti-additive expression as licens- 
ing element. In order to understand the difference between mono- 
tone decreasing and anti-additive expressions, one should keep in 
mind that monotonic expressions are typically associated with se- 
mantic functions that display the patterns in (20). 


(20) a. fixny)^f{x)nf{y) c. f{x kj y) ^f{.x) n f{y) 
h. /(x)u/(y)c/(jcuy) d. /(x)u/(v)e/(xny) 

It should be noted that the formulas in (20c) and (20d) corre- 
spond to one half of the first, and one half of the second, law of De 
Morgan, respectively.-^ Inasmuch as these laws can be said to charac- 
terize the use of negation, monotone decreasing expressions may be 
regarded as being weakly negative. 

We can now explain what the difference is between a monotonic 
expression and one which is additive or anti-additive. An element 
which is additive exhibits the pattern in (21a); one which is anti- 
additive displays the pattern in (21b). 


Kas & Zwarts: Intervention phenomena 287 


(21) a. fix <j y) = fix) Kj fiy) b. fix u y) = fix) n fiy) 

In other words, anti-additive phrases embody a stronger form of 
negation than monotone decreasing ones in that they are governed 
by the entire first law of De Morgan. This logical difference is re- 
flected in the behavior of the German NPls in (18) and (19). Whereas 
hrauchen is content with a monotone decreasing noun phrase like 
hochstens n N 'at most n N' as licensing element, auch nur 
irgendetwas requires the presence of an anti-additive expression like 
keiner 'no one' or keiner von diesen Leuten 'none of these people'. ^ 

There is another class of expressions which represents a 
stronger form of negation than the monotone decreasing ones, but 
which is independent of the class of anti-additive expressions. These 
are the so-called anti-multiplicative elements, which are typically as- 
sociated with the semantic pattern in (22b). Their multiplicative 
counterparts exhibit the pattern in (22a). 


(22) a. fixr^y)=fix)nfiy) b. fix r^ y) = fix) kj fiy) 

It is easy to see that anti-multiplicative phrases differ from 
their anti-additive counterparts in that they validate not the first, 
but the second law of De Morgan as a whole. Representatives of this 
group are expressions of the forms not all N, not every N, and not 

The Extended Monotonicity Calculus (EMC) enables us to com- 
pute the semantic values of a larger class of expressions, among them 
compositions of anti-additive and additive elements. That this is nec- 
essary is shown by the Dutch example in (23), which features the 
strong NPI ook maar enig krediet 'any credit (at all)', the anti-addi- 
tive expressions geen criticus 'no critic', and the additive expression 
een schrijver 'a writer'. 

(23) Geen criticus geeft een schrijver ook maar enig krediet. 
No critic gives a writer any credit 

The EMC tells us that such sentences are acceptable because the 
property of anti-additivity, associated with the universal negative 
geen kind, is preserved by the composite expression geen kind geeft 
een schrijver. To see this, it is enough to take the theorem in (24) 
into consideration. 

(24) Theorem 

Let B, B* and B** be three Boolean algebras and let /: B -^ B* 
and g: B* -> B**. Then: 

a. If/ is additive and g is additive, then g °f is additive. 

b. If/ is additive and g is anti-additive, then g °f is anti- 

c. If/ is anti-additive and g is multiplicative, then g ° f is anti- 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 ( 1994) 

d. If/ is anti-additive and g is anti-multiplicative, then g ° ./ is 

e. If/ is multiplicative and g is multiplicative, then g ° / is 

f. If/ is multiplicative and g is anti-multiplicative, then g o f is 

g. If/ is anti-multiplicative and g is additive, then g <=/ is anti- 

h. If/ is anti-multiplicative and g is anti-additive, then g o f is 

These results have been collected in table 1. It should be noted 
that in a number of cases the composition g ° f is neither additive or 
multiplicative nor anti-additive or anti-multiplicative. Since additive 
and multiplicative functions are monotone increasing, and anti-addi- 
tive and anti-multiplicative functions monotone decreasing, the 
result will be a monotonic function. 

Table 1: Compositions of additive, anti-additive, 

multiplicative, and anti-multiplicative functions 



























With the aid of table 1, we can give a more accurate analysis of 
the sentence in (23). The following derivation provides the necessary 

(25) Geen kind geeft 

No child gives 



een schrijver ook maar enig krediet 

a writer any credit 




Since the ditransitive verb geeft is associated with a homomor- 
phic, hence additive, function, the composition of the anti-additive 
noun phrase geen kind and geeft yields an anti-additive expression. 
If we combine this string with the additive noun phrase een 
schrijver, the result will be an expression which is still anti-additive. 
In other words, the property of additivity associated with geeft and 
een schrijver guarantees that the anti-additivity of the noun phrase 
geen kind is inherited by the composite expression geen kind geeft 
een schrijver. This is what makes the strong NPI ook maar enig 
krediet possible. 

Kas & Zwarts: Intervention phenomena 


Note that (23) becomes ungrammatical if we replace the indef- 
inite determiner een by an expression like verscheidene 'several' or 
minstens zes 'at least six'. 

(26) a. *Geen kind geeft verscheidene schrijvers ook maar enig / 

No child gives several writers any 

b. *Geen kind geeft minstens zes schrijvers ook maar enig / 
No child gives at least six writers any 


The reason is that noun phrases of the forms verscheidene N and 
minstens n N, though upward monotonic, cannot be analyzed as ad- 
ditive expressions. Consequently, the composite expressions geen 
kind geeft verscheidene schrijvers and geen kind geeft minstens zes 
schrijvers are only monotone decreasing, which is not sufficient to 
justify the occurrence of strong NPIs. 

Another class of examples which demonstrates the usefulness of 
EMC involves the composition of an anti-additive and a multiplicative 
element. Typical examples are those in which a universal quantifier 
intervenes between a universal negative, on the one hand, and the 
NPI, on the other. As is illustrated by the ungrammatical Dutch sen- 
tence in (27), strong NPIs are excluded from such environments. 

(27) *Geen kind geeft iedere schrijver ook maar enig krediet. 
No child gives every writer any credit 

This follows immediately from EMC, since the composition of an 
expression which is anti-additive (geen kind geeft) and one which is 
multiplicative {iedere schrijver) is only downward monotonic, as the 
analysis in (28) shows. 

(28) Geen kind geeft iedere schrijver ook maar enig krediet 
No child gives every writer any credit 





MON i 

Sentences like (27) are also discussed in Linebarger (1981). She 
observes that the English counterpart involving the NPI any N is 
likewise ungrammatical. Particularly revealing in this respect is the 
contrast in (29), which shows that intervening proper names and 
NPIs introduced by any behave differ from universal noun phrases 
in that they behave like indefinites. ^ 

290 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(29) a. *No student gave every teacher any apples. 

b. No student gave Mrs. Smith any apples. 

c. No student gave any teacher any apples. 

From a semantic point of view, the acceptability of (29b) and 
(29c) is not surprising, since proper names and existential expres- 
sions like any teacher are both associated with a quantifier which is 
additive. The ungrammaticality of (29a), on the other hand, is re- 
markable. It shows that expressions of the form any N not only be- 
have like weak NPIs, but in certain cases also display the typical 
features of strong NPIs. 

We conclude this paper by discussing some of the more contro- 
versial predictions of EMC. The Dutch sentence in (30) should be out 
because the composite expression een kind geeft geen schrijver 'a 
child gives no writer' is only monotone decreasing in nature. Yet, 
most speakers appear to accept such sentences. 

(30) Een kind geeft geen schrijver ook maar enig krediet. 
An child gives no writer any credit 

EMC tells us that such an outcome is to be expected because the 
composition of an additive and an anti-additive expression gives us a 
monotone decreasing one. More precisely, the string een kind geeft 
geen schrijver can be analyzed as the composition of two expressions 
which are additive {een kind and geeft) and one which is anti-addi- 
tive {geen schrijver). As (31) shows, the resulting string is associated 
with a semantic function which is only downward monotonic in na- 
ture. We have seen that this is not sufficient to justify the occurrence 
of strong NPIs. 

(31) Een kind geeft geen schrijver ook maar enig krediet 
A child gives no writer any credit 



MON i 

EMC also predicts that the Dutch example in (32), which features 
two universal negatives, should be ungrammatical. Yet, many speak- 
ers accept such cases. 

(32) Geen kind geeft geen schrijver ook maar enig krediet. 
No child gives no writer any credit 

It is easy to see why EMC blocks such cases. The phrase geen 
kind geeft geen schrijver 'no child gives no writer' can be analyzed as 
the composition of an anti-additive expression {geen kind), an addi- 
tive one {geven), and again an anti-additive one {geen schrijver). As 

(33) shows, the semantic function associated with the resulting string 
is monotone increasing. 

Kas & Zwarts: Intervention phenomena 291 

(33) Geen kind geeft geen schrijver ook maar enig krediet 

No child gives no writer any credit 






MON i- 

It appears that we can make the right predictions by distin- 
guishing between maximal and non-maximal compositions. What the 
examples in (30) and (32) have in common is that the anti-additive 
nature of the indirect object alone is sufficient to trigger the strong 
NPI ook maar enig krediet. This suggests that NPI licensing is not 
determined by semantic properties of the sentence. Instead, we seem 
to be forced to accept that local properties of expressions are the rel- 
evant parameter. 


* A grant provided by the Centre for Language and Cognition 
Groningen enabled the first author to visit the FLSM-5 conference 
and to present this paper, which is hereby gratefully acknowledged. 

' Sentences such as those in (2) have been discussed by 
Ladusaw (1980: 163, 164). Linebarger (1981) introduces a sig- 
nificantly larger set of intervention phenomena, some of which will 
be treated in what follows. 

2 Monotone increasing functions are sometimes said to be 
isotone. Their monotone decreasing counterparts are accordingly re- 
ferred to as antitone functions. See Birkhoff (1967) and Stoll (1974), 
among others. 

3 The laws in question are, of course, the familiar set-theoretical 
identities -(X u Y) = -X n -Y and -(X n Y) = -X u -Y. Quine (1952) 
speaks in this connection of the first, and the second, law of De 
Morgan, respectively. 

4 Laka Mugarza (1990) introduces the notion of an /i-word to 
describe expressions like nadie 'no one', nada 'nothing' and nunc a 
'never' in Spanish. Though she regards these elements as polarity 
items, Zanuttini (1991) argues that they should be treated as 
universal negatives. Since the quantifier associated with a universal 
negative is anti-additive, the class of n -words may be regarded as 
being identical to the class of anti-additive expressions. 

5 These examples are due to Eric Jackson, who discussed them in 
a lecture at the University of Groningen {Negative Polarity and 
'Strong' Statements, May 1994). In a recent talk under the title Does 
negative polarity/concord marking serve as an explicit indicator for 
downward-monotone inference in natural logic? (PIONIER colloquium 
on Negation and Polarity, University of Groningen, June 21-22 1994), 

292 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

David Dowty has argued that a sentence such as Sue didn't read 
every book to any student differs from Sue didn't read every book to 
a student in that it lacks the reading in which the universally 
quantified expression every book occurs within the scope of the 
negation operator. Since the universal noun phrase everybody in 
*Sue didn't say everybody caught any armadillo's cannot be given 
wide scope, the sentence in question must be classified as un- 


VAN BENTHEM, Johan. 1986. Essays in logical semantics. Dordrecht: 


. 1991. Language in action. Amsterdam: North-Holland. 

BIRKHOFF, G. 1967. Lattice theory. Third edition. Providence, RL 

American Mathematical Society. 
Kas, Mark. 1993. Essays on Boolean functions and negative polarity. 

University of Groningen Ph.D. dissertation. 
KEENAN, Edward L., & Leonard M. Faltz. 1985. Boolean semantics for 

natural language. Dordrecht: Reidel. 
LadUSAW, William A. 1980. Polarity sensitivity as inherent scope re- 
lations. University of Texas at Austin Ph.D. dissertation. 

Bloomington Indiana: Indiana University Linguistics Club. 
LiNEBARGER, Marcia C. 1981. The grammar of negative polarity. MIT 

Ph.D. dissertation. Bloomington Indiana: Indiana University 

Linguistics Club. 
Partee, Barbara, & Mats Rooth 1983. Generalized conjunction and 

type ambiguity. Meaning, use, and interpretation of language, ed. 

by R. Bauerle, C. Schwarze & A. von Stechow, 361-383. Berlin: de 

QUINE, W. V. 1952. Methods of logic. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. 
Sanchez Valencia, Victor. 1991. Studies on natural logic and catego- 

rial grammar. University of Amsterdam Ph.D. dissertation. 
STOLL, R. R. 1974. Sets, logic, and axiomatic theories. Second edition. 

San Francisco: Freeman. 
VAN DER WOUDEN, Anton. 1994. Negative contexts. University of 

Groningen Ph.D. dissertation. 
ZWARTS, Frans. 1991. Negation and generalized quantifiers. 

Generalized quantifier theory and application, ed. by Jaap van 

der Does & Jan van Eijck, 443-462. Amsterdam: Dutch Network 

for Language, Logic and Information. 
. 1993. Three types of polarity. Semantics, ed. by F. Hamm & E. 

Hinrichs (to appear). 

Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


David Kathman 
University of Chicago 

Infinitival verbal complements, treated as VPs in tradi- 
tional grammars, have been assumed by most generative 
syntacticians to be clauses (IPs or CPs) with null subjects. In 
this paper I argue that most of the major motivations for 
considering these complements to be clauses — the Theta 
Criterion, the Extended Projection Principle, and the re- 
quirement that PRO be ungoverned — have been weakened 
or eliminated under Chomsky's Minimalist program for syn- 
tax, and suggest that at least some, if not all, infinitival 
complements should be considered VPs under Minimalist 

1. Introduction 

One of the most significant ways in which Chomskyan syntax differs 
from other models is in its treatment of infinitival verbal comple- 
ments. Syntacticians working in the Extended Standard Theory of 
syntax and its descendants (Chomsky 1981, 1986, 1993, 1994) have 
generally taken infinitival verbal complements to be full clauses, 
with null NP subjects (e.g. John tried [s' PRO to leave]); in most other 
structuralist models of grammar, such complements have generally 
been considered VPs (e.g. John tried [vp to leave]). ^ 

In this paper I suggest that under the minimalist theory of syn- 
tax outlined by Chomsky (1993), many of the most important moti- 
vations for infinitival complements being clauses have been elimi- 
nated or greatly weakened, and that at least some (and possibly all) 
such complements are best regarded as VPs in the revised frame- 
work. What follows will necessarily be somewhat programmatic, but 
I hope to show that the idea of infinitival complements as VPs is at 
least a plausible one given recent theoretical developments, and that 
possible objections to such a reanalysis are tractable. 

2. Background and theoretical assumptions 

I assume the basics of the Minimalist program as put forth in 
Chomsky (1993, 1994). One of the major ideas of this program is that 
of economy, both economy of derivation (the fewer steps the better, 
and the shorter the move the better), and economy of theoretical 
principles (the theory should involve as few such principles as pos- 
sible). In keeping with this approach, Chomsky, in the above works, 
questions the need for such venerable principles as the Projection 
Principle and the Theta Criterion; he tentatively suggests that they 

294 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

can be eliminated entirely, while recognizing that such a move re- 
quires rethinking of many established analyses. It is in this spirit 
that the present paper should be taken; I propose that treating in- 
finitival complements as VPs is both desirable and justifiable under 
Minimalist assumptions, though space will not permit considering all 
the implications such a move will have. 

I do break from standard assumptions in one other respect, 
namely the placement of AgrO. Like Chomsky, I adopt an "expanded 
INFL" model of syntax, with multiple functional heads; however, I 
suggest that AgrOP is inside rather than outside VP, with the direct 
object of the verb base-generated in [Spec, AgrOP], as argued in 
Kathman (1992): 


As in Chomsky's model, the object's Case features are checked in 
[Spec, AgrO], but unlike in Chomsky's model, the object does not have 
to move to get there. (This leads to shorter derivations, on the face of 
it a desirable consequence in the Minimalist program.) 

A more significant difference involves theta-role assignment; if 
we eliminate head government, as Chomsky (1993) proposes (see 
Section 3 below), the verb cannot directly assign the object's theta 
role in the above configuration. This is not an insurmountable prob- 
lem, though, if we treat theta roles as a type of phi-feature, similar to 
Case, which are checked (or assigned) in a Spec-head configuration 
rather than being assigned directly by the verb. 2 This is a rather nat- 
ural step, given the direction the theory has been going; VP-internal 
subjects already get their theta role in a Spec-head configuration 
with the verb, and Case in Chomsky's model is always checked in 
Spec of AgrP. Whatever mechanism is used to insure the proper dis- 
tribution of Case with various verbs — i.e., to insure that a sentence 
with a transitive verb has an AgrOP to check Accusative Case, while a 
sentence with an intransitive verb does not — can be used in a similar 
way to insure the proper distribution of theta roles. -^ Both Case and 
theta features can be distributed by the verb to AgrO via the head- 
head relation, but they are independent of each other; a verb's AgrO 
can have theta but not Case features (i.e. unaccusative verbs), or Case 
but not theta features (i.e. Raising to Object verbs, to be discussed 
below). I will assume that an AgrO must have either Case or theta 
features (or both) in order to be present. 

Kathman: Infinitival complements in a Minimalist theory of grammar 295 

It should be noted that this proposal about the position of AgrO 
is independent of the categorial status of infinitival complements; I 
am presenting it here so that the structures with multiple comple- 
ments to be presented later will not require lengthy explanations. 
The major conclusion of this paper is perfectly compatible with a 
model such as Chomsky's where AgrOP is located above VP, but such 
a model will have to deal with multiple complements some other 
way, such as via Larsonian complex structures and movement. 

3. The categorial status of infinitival complements 

Throughout much of the history of generative syntax, infinitival 
complements have tended to be a significant battleground, where 
generative grammarians have differentiated themselves both from 
each other and from traditional grammarians. In classical transfor- 
mational grammar (e.g. Rosenbaum 1970), infinitival complements 
were assumed to be surface VPs, since they do not have an overt 
subject, though they were assumed to be clauses in deep structure. 
In the early 1970s, with the introduction of empty categories into 
syntax, a split occurred between those who still believed that infini- 
tival complements are syntactic (surface) VPs (e.g. Bresnan 1972) 
and those who believed, for reasons outlined below, that such com- 
plements are (surface) clauses with a null subject. The former branch 
evolved into LFG and related theories; the latter branch became 
Government-and-Binding and ultimately Minimalism. 

Since the advent of empty categories, few linguists working in 
the GB/P&P tradition have seriously questioned the conclusion that 
infinitival complements are clauses."* The major motivations for this 
conclusion are the Theta Criterion, the (Extended) Projection Prin- 
ciple, and the requirement that PRO be ungoverned.5 However, 1 ar- 
gue below that, given recent developments in syntactic theory, these 
motivations are no longer as compelling as they once were, and sug- 
gest that the idea that such complements are VPs is at least worth 

3.1 The Theta Criterion 

The Theta Criterion states (in part) that every verb's theta roles must 
be assigned to some syntactic element; thus, in a sentence with an 
infinitival complement, there must be a position for the embedded 
verb to discharge its external theta role to. In a control sentence, this 
position is filled by PRO (cf. 2a), and in a raising sentence (2b) it is 
filled by the trace of an overt NP which has raised into the matrix 

(2) a. Johuj tried [PROj to leave] 
b. John, seemed [tj to leave] 

In traditional GB the position in question had to be the subject of 
a clause, but Chomsky 1993 adopts the suggestion of numerous au- 
thors (e.g. Koopman & Sportiche 1991) that subjects receive their 
theta role inside VP, raising to [Spec, IP] in order to receive Case 

296 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(technically, to have their Case features checked). But since PRO has 
no Case features, and Raising subjects have their Case features 
checked in the matrix clause, the VP-internal subject hypothesis ob- 
viates any theta- or Case-theoretic motivation for having structure 
higher than VP in infinitival complements. 

3.2 The (Extended) Projection Principle 

In the framework of Chomsky (1981, 1986), the Extended Projection 
Principle (EPP) (Chomsky 1982:10) effectively requires every VP to 
be associated with a subject position, i.e. to be part of a clause. 
Chomsky 1993 explicitly abandons the Projection Principle (at least 
as it has been traditionally formulated), and though he does not di- 
rectly address the EPP, various linguists (e.g. Jones 1984) have ar- 
gued that its job can be done by proper formulations of Case- and 
theta-theory. Given the reductionist spirit of Minimalism and par- 
ticularly the stripped-down theory of phrase structure presented in 
Chomsky 1994, the EPP seems a prime candidate for elimination. 

Alternately, one could argue that the Extended Projection Prin- 
ciple does not, as is commonly assumed, inevitably require extra-VP 
structure. Manzini 1992 argues that the EPP can be reduced to the 
general requirement that a head associated with syntactic assign- 
ment features must assign them to some position. Given the possibil- 
ity of the verb's external theta role being assigned within VP, this 
formulation of the EPP eliminates the need for a VP-external subject 
position in the absence of any independent motivation for such a 
position (such as the need to check Case features). 

3.3 The properties of PRO 

One of the defining characteristics of PRO, at least in traditional GB, is 
that it is ungoverned. In the Barriers framework, the complement in 
John tried to leave is a CP, with PRO in [Spec, IP] (as in (3a) below); if 
this complement were a simple VP with PRO in [Spec, VP] (as in 
(3b)), then under standard assumptions PRO would be head- 
governed by the matrix verb and the structure would be ruled out. 

(3) a. Johni tried [cp C [ip PROj to leave]] 
b. Johnj tried [vp PRO; to leave] 

But Chomsky (1993:10) suggests that head government can be 
eliminated and that all syntactic relations are strictly local (i.e. re- 
stricted to Spec-head, head-complement, and head-head relations). If 
this suggestion is adopted, then PRO is not governed by the matrix 
verb in (3b), and there is no reason to rule this structure out. 

4. Infinitival complements as VPs 

Given the above developments, and given the explicit desire of 
Chomsky's Minimalist program to simplify grammar wherever pos- 
sible, I suggest that the null hypothesis is that ALL infinitival com- 
plements are simply VPs, as in (4a-b) below. Finite clausal comple- 
ments are still CPs, as in (4c): 


Kathman: Infinitival complements in a Minimalist theory of grammar 


(4) a. Johiii tried [vp PROj to leave] 

b. Johrii seemed [vp tj to leave] 

c. John knows [cp that [ip Mary is intelligent]] 

Subject-control sentences would then have the structure in (5a), 
with PRO in the Spec of the VP complement; subject-raising sen- 
tences would have the structure in (5b), with the embedded subject 
raising to Spec of AgrSP in order to get Case. (For simplicity's sake I 
have not included T or any other functional heads besides Agr which 
may be present in the matrix clauses, and I have not shown the trace 
of the matrix subject in [Spec, VP].) 







Next, consider sentences with both an NP direct object and an 
infinitival complement, such as John persuaded Mary to leave (object 
control) and John believes Mary to have left (ECM verbs). The struc- 
ture I propose for these sentences is shown below in (6). Following 
Chomsky (1993), the second of these involves a form of Raising to 
Object, which is now allowed again due to the elimination of the Pro- 
jection Principle and the fact that object Case is now checked in AgrO 
rather than being assigned directly by the verb: 

(6) a. VP b. VP 

V AgrOP 


NP AgrO" 
Mar>7 y\ 

AgrO VP 




to leave 

V AgrOP 


NP AgrO' 


to leave 

298 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

The fact that AgrOP here is inside VP rather than outside it leaves 
the complement position of AgrOP available for a second complement 
in addition to the NP object, such as the infinitival complement in the 
above examples, or a Small Clause predicate in such sentences as 
They elected Bill president (cf. Kathman 1992). This allows us to pre- 
serve binary branching trees without any of the extra structure and 
elaborate mechanisms which have been proposed for such structures 
(e.g. by Larson 1991); the amount of movement in Larson's proposal 
seems inimical to the Minimalist view of movement as a 'last resort', 
possible only to satisfy morphological requirements of a word. 

One question which the above sketch leaves unanswered is the 
position and status of infinitival to, which in traditional GB was gen- 
erally treated as the lexical instantiation of I or T. I tentatively sug- 
gest that to is instead an athematic verb which takes a VP comple- 
ment, as argued by Pullum 1982. Subject-control and raising-to- 
subject sentences would then actually have something like the 
structures in (7): 

(V) a. VP b. 







to y\ 


PRO. 1 

' V 



seem /X,^ 


to X\ 

NP y 

^ ^ 


This verb could be seen as a lexical instantiation of the type of 'light 
verb' proposed by Larson and suggested by Chomsky (1994:33-4) to 
account for adverb placement in his theory. Such a verb does not 
have a thematic structure of its own, but is part of the extended 
projection of the lower verb ('leave' in the above examples). ^ 

5. Consequences and conclusions 

This analysis allows a symmetrical treatment of Control and Raising 
verbs, with the difference among the four types (subject control, ob- 
ject control, subject raising, object raising) reducing to the Case and 
Theta-marking properties of these verbs. All four type of verb select 
a VP complement, and their other properties vary according to 
whether they require object case and internal and external theta 
roles, as shown in the following table: 

Kathman: Infinitival complements in a Minimalist theory of grammar 299 






Theta Role? 

Theta Role? 

















These are the four classic cases of complement-taking verbs, but 
there are other possible permutations of these properties, some of 
which are realized in English. For example, the passive of an object- 
control verb such as 'persuade' (i.e. John was persuaded to leave) has 
no object case, does assign an internal theta role, and does not assign 
an external theta role (no — yes — no in the above table). The archaic 
but still-used verb 'behoove' (i.e. It behooves John to leave) has ob- 
ject case and assigns an internal theta role, but does not assign an 
external theta role (yes — yes — no). 

Thus, the elimination of the Projection Principle and Head Gov- 
ernment leads to a tidier, more principled analysis of infinitival com- 
plements in general, suggesting that the minimalist program is on the 
right track. There are certainly many questions which remain to be 
answered, but I hope to have shown that the idea of treating infiniti- 
val complements as VPs is a feasible one, whose consequences should 
be studied in more detail. 


' Ironically, 'traditional' grammars often treat subjectless infini- 
tivals as clauses (for example, Curme (1925:166-7) calls them 
'abridged clauses' and considers them a subset of subordinate 
clauses), and are thus closer to the Principles-and-Parameters ap- 
proach than to other models. 

2 Note that such indirect theta marking is scarcely new in the 
literature. Chomsky & Lasnik (1993) explicitly abandon the long- 
standing assumption that theta role assignment requires sisterhood 
(some kind of indirect theta marking is needed anyway for such 
things as double objects), and Larson (1988) proposes structures 
very much like that in (1) for sentences involving multiple com- 
plements; the present proposal simply extends this configuration to 
all direct objects, whether or not there is a further complement of 
the verb. 

3 There must be some such mechanism, though Chomsky 1993 
does not really address this question; he merely says (p. 9) that in 
intransitive sentences, AgrOP is either absent or inert. But it must be 
the verb which determines whether AgrOP is present, presumably 
via the head-head relationship between V and AgrO. 

4 In the decade leading up to the publication of Chomsky 1981, 
several transformational grammarians (e.g. Brame 1976, Bresnan 
1972, Lasnik & Fiengo 1974, Morin & Wehrli 1978) did propose that 

300 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

infinitival complements might be VPs, but since 1981 such proposals 
have come almost entirely from practitioners of LFG, GPSG, and 
related theories. 

5 Koster & May 1982 explicitly argue within the context of early 
GB that infinitival complements are clauses (S-bars), rather than VPs 
as the linguists cited above have argued. The arguments which 
Koster & May adduce are primarily of two types: first, treating 
infinitival complements as VPs would complicate the phrase struc- 
ture rules needed for English, and second, there is evidence for a null 
subject argument in such complements. But neither of these argu- 
ments applies to the present proposal; phrase structure rules were 
long ago eliminated from the theory, and null arguments such as PRO 
and traces can appear in Spec of VP, as outlined below in Section 4. 

6 In (7) I have shown PRO and trace in the Spec of the lowest VP, 
but it is an open question whether they belong there or in the Spec 
of the VP headed by to, as they should be if we follow the light verb 
analogy (cf. Chomsky 1994:33). If the latter, the verb's internal theta 
role features must be transferred to to, which seems a plausible 
option given the possibility of transferring of such features to AgrO. 


Brame, Michael. 1976. Conjectures and refutations in syntax and 

semantics. New York: Elsevier. 
BRESNAN, Joan. 1972. Theory of complementation in English syntax. 

MIT Ph.D. dissertation in Linguistics. 
Chomsky, Noam. 1965. Aspects of the theory of syntax. Cambridge, 

MA: MIT Press. 

. 1981. Lectures on Government and Binding. Dordrecht: Foris. 

. 1982. Some concepts and consequences of the theory of 

Government and Binding. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. 

.1986. Barriers. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. 

. 1993. A minimalist program for linguistic theory. The view 

from Building 20, ed. by Kenneth Hale & Samuel Jay Keyser, 

1-52. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. 
. 1994. Bare phrase structure. Cambridge, MA: MIT Working 

Papers in Linguistics. 
, & Howard Lasnik. 1991. Principles and Parameters theory. 

Syntax: an international handbook of contemporary research, 

ed. by J. Jacobs, A. von Stechow, W. Sternefeld, & T. Venneman. 

Berlin: de Gruyter. 
CURME, George. 1925. College English grammar. Richmond, VA: 

Johnson Publishing Co. 
GRIMSHAW, Jane, & Armin Mester. 1988. Light verbs and theta- 

marking. Linguistic Inquiry 19.205-232. 
JONES, Charles. 1984. Under control: where is the controlled element? 

CLS 20. 


Kathman: Infinitival complements in a minimalist theory of grammar 301 

KatHMAN, David. 1992. Abkhaz and the nature of object agreement. 
FLSM 3.125-138 

KOOPMAN, Hilda, & Dominique Sportiche. 1991. The position of sub- 
jects. Lingua 85. 

KOSTER, Jan, & Robert May. 1982. On the constituency of infinitives. 
Language 58.116-143. 

Larson, Richard. 1991. 'Promise' and the theory of control. Linguistic 
Inquiry 22.103-139. 

LasNIK, Howard, & Robert Fiengo. 1974. Complement object deletion. 
Linguistic Inquiry 5.535-71. 

, & Mamoru Saito. 1991. On the subject of infinitives. CLS 


Manzini, M. Rita. 1992. The Projection Principle(s): a reexamination. 
Thematic role and its structure in grammar, ed. by I. M. Roca, 
271-29L Dordrecht: Foris. 

MORIN, Jean-Yves, & Eric Wehrli. 1978. Wh-movement in VP': 
infinitival interrogatives. NELS 9.103-11. 

ROSENBAUM, Peter. 1970. A principle governing deletion in English 
sentential complementation. Readings in English transforma- 
tional grammar, ed. by R. Jacobs & P. Rosenbaum. Waltham, MA: 




Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Andreas Kathol 
Ohio State University 

A closer look at putative parasitic gap constructions in 
German reveals that they are not only considerably more 
limited in their occurrence but also do not exhibit any of 
the long-distance properties of their English counterparts. 
Instead, it can be shown that a lexical analysis is in closer 
accord with the observed facts. Such a lexically-based ac- 
count is proposed in which modifiers and modifiees are 
linked by partial unification of their valence properties. 

1. Introduction 

Typical cases of English 'parasitic gap constructions' discussed in 
the syntactic literature are given in (1), from Postal 1994:63. 

(1) a. [Which article]] did Ted copy t] without reading PG\. 

b. The woman who your attack on PG2 encouraged /'2- 

c. It was Irving who they proved associates of PG3 to have 
bribed /3. 

It is standardly assumed that there is an asymmetric relationship 
between the different kinds of missing constituents in such con- 
structions. Thus, the gaps in the adverbial phrase, subject, and raised 
object respectively, notated as 'PG\ are dependent on the presence of 
another extraction site. While there is not exactly a shortage of theo- 
retical attempts to explain this phenomenon of English (cf., for in- 
stance, the references in Postal 1994), there are relatively few stud- 
ies that have investigated putatively similar constructions in other 
languages, Dutch possibly exempted. With the widely accepted view 
of syntax as an enterprise engaged in looking for cross-linguistically 
valid principles, there has often been the implicit or explicit assump- 
tion that the explanatory mechanisms uncovered for English should 
also be of relevance for other languages exhibiting the phenomenon.' 
The aim of this paper, however, is to show that this is in fact a mis- 
taken assumption, at least as far as equating superficially similar 
constructions in German with English parasitic gaps is concerned. 

2. The case for parasitic gaps in German 

The first place in which the possibility of parasitic gap construc- 
tions in standard varieties of German^ was extensively discussed is 
Felix 1985, who cites examples such as the ones in (2): (p. 190) 

(2) a. Hans hat Mariai fohne PG\ anzusehen] gekiiBt. 

Hans has Maria without to. look. at kissed 

'Hans kissed Maria without looking at her.' 

304 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

b. Man hat Hansj [ohne PG\ zu verstandigen] entlassen. 
one has Hans without to notify 

'They fired Hans without notifying him.' 

Since then, their status in the syntactic description of German 
has had a somewhat peculiar quality. It appears that some re- 
searchers take their marginal status and variation of speakers' judg- 
ments as indicating that these phenomena, to the extent that the in- 
tuitions are shared, are only of limited interest in the syntactic de- 
scription of German. For instance, no mention of German parasitic 
gaps is made in standard references for transformational German 
syntax (cf. Grewendorf 1988:189, v. Stechow and Sternefeld 1988). 
On the other hand, it has not been uncommon to cite such construc- 
tions as evidence in determining the nature of certain syntactic phe- 
nomena. In doing so, those researchers virtually always presuppose 
that the German construction is to be viewed as instantiating essen- 
tially the very same properties that have been reported to be exhib- 
ited by their English — or Dutch — counterparts. In particular, this 
means that the parasitic gap is to be licensed by means of an opera- 
tor in an A-bar position which c-commands both gaps while no c- 
command relationship must hold between the real and parasitic gap. 
This approach, adopted for German by Felix 1985, has often been 
taken to yield a diagnostic for the nature of scrambling, which on this 
view is the process responsible for placing the A-bar operator into its 
structurally higher position, for instance along the lines sketched in 
(3), which subsumes a number of different positions on the cate- 
gories involved that have been proposed at one point or another in 
the literature. 















Take, for instance, Webelhuth 1989, 1992:209, who shares this 
general view. However, he argues that analyzing the landing site as 
an A-bar position will fail to explain why in (4), an element that has 
moved into that position, such as the NP die Gdste, is eligible for 
binding a reciprocal like einander: 

Kathol: Parasitic "gaps" in German revisited 305 

(4) ?Peter hat die Gastei [ohne PGi anzuschauen] 
Peter has the guests without to. look. at 
einanderi t[ vorgestellt. 
each. other introduced 

'Peter introduced the guests to each other without looking at 

Webelhuth's conclusion is that (4) shows that the landing site for 
scrambling is neither an argument nor an operator position, and 
hence that scrambling must lie outside of the usual GB dichotomy of 
A- vs. A-bar movement. Instead, scrambling is to be viewed as a 
third kind of movement so that "elements in such positions' are not 
'restricted in their binding potential' (Webelhuth 1992:209). If so, it 
can at the same time bind the anaphor einander as well as the 
parasitic gap PG. 

Whether one adopts this proposal or tries to argue for a more 
conventional analysis of scrambling as A-bar movement, as Mahajan 
(1990) does, any movement-based theory of parasitic gap licensing 
poses a severe challenge to approaches to scrambling without dislo- 
cation, as for instance in much of the current unification-based liter- 
ature. In particular, it is anything but clear how a landing site can be 
provided in theories (cf. Uszkoreit 1987, Pollard (in press)) that as- 
sume a flat structure analysis for the German Mittelfeld. The same 
holds for liberation-style proposals such as Reape 1993 (in press), in 
which constituent order is accounted for in terms of intermediate 
levels of structure which then in effect become invisible in the 
course of the successive linearization of the involved constituents. 
Crucially, in none of such theories is there is room for a general ap- 
proach to Mittelfeld order variations in terms of true dislocations 
parallel to GB's move-a, which on the transformational view provide 
the necessary c-command relationships for licensing parasitic gaps. 

Of central importance then in light of these opposing views of 
order variations is a critical assessment of whether what many, per- 
haps without much reflection, have taken to be cousins of the 
English/Dutch constructions are really instantiations of the same type 
of syntactic phenomenon. For terminological convenience, I will con- 
tinue to refer to examples as in (2) as parasitic gap constructions, in 
short PG. 

3 . The case against parasitic gaps in German 

It has often been observed that the range of PG in German is 
significantly smaller than that in English. While this is doubtless cor- 
rect, it is not immediately clear whether this follows from the fact 
that German simply lacks particular structural properties that are 
involved in many of the English cases or whether deeper differences 
are at play. Thus, for instance, it is clear that one will not be able to 
find a grammatical German counterpart of the subject PG in (lb) be- 
cause the language does not permit English-style preposition 
stranding, as shown in (5): 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

(5) *die Frau, welchei deine Attacke [auf PGi] t\ ermutigte 

The woman who your attack on encouraged 

A rather similar situation presents itself in Dutch, where extractions 
from prepositional phrases is equally ruled out. Yet, it has been 
claimed by Huybregts and v. Riemsdijk (1984:186) that if the subject 
gap is contained in a postpositional phrase, which in general does al- 
low extraction, 'licit' cases parallel to (la) can indeed be found, as 
shown in (6): 

(6) ?Dat zijn incomplete systemen waari 
those are incomplete systems that 
[ieder onderzoek PG\ naar] 

every investigation into 

ernstig t\ door belemmerd wordt. 

seriously by impeded is 

However, corresponding examples in German, given in (7), appear to 
provoke predominantly negative responses in terms of their 

(7) a. ?*/*weil mich daj [ein Bild PG\ von] ... 

because me there a picture of 

' fi vor gewarnt hat. 
against warned has 

^i driiber aufgeklart hat. 
over enlightened has 
*Dies ist die Stadt woj mich [ein Bild PG\ von] ... 
this is the city where me a picture of 

' t\ vor gewarnt hat. 
against warned has 

/i driiber aufgeklart hat. 
over enlightened has 

Other candidate PG constructions involve simultaneous gaps in com- 
plement clauses and matrix postpositional phrases. For instance, 
Huybregts and v. Riemsdijk (1985:179) state that the Dutch example 
in (8) is 'near perfect'. 

(8) ?Dit is een boek [waar ik e'\ van denk 

this is a book which I of think 

[dat Jan ei naar verlangt]] 
that Jan for longs 

'This is a book about which 1 think that Jan longs for it.' 

While there is disagreement in the literature over which of the gaps 
is parasitic and which is real, it is clear that corresponding examples 
in German are plain ungrammatical, as demonstrated in (9): 

(9) *Dies ist ein Umstand [wo ich e'\ von denke, 

this is a circumstance which I of think 

[daB Ed ej mit gerechnet hat]] 
that Ed with counted has 



Kathol: Parasitic "gaps" in German revisited 307 

However, one area in which Dutch and German do show a similar 
pattern — contrary to English — is the unavailability of parasitic gaps in 
relative clauses, exemplified by the contrast in (10): ((10b) from 
Bennis (1987:46)) 

(10) a. This is the book thatj [everyone [who reads PG\] 

becomes enthusiastic about rj 

b. *Dit is het boek datj [iedereen [die PGi leest]] t\ bewondert. 

c. *Dies ist das Buch welchesj [jeder [der PGi liest]] 
t\ bewundert. 

The data in (11) show that extractions from postpositional phrases 
are similar in this respect: 

(11) a. *Dit is een vraag waar [iedereen 

this is a question which everyone 
[die PG\ over denkt]] een antwoord t\ op weet. 
who about thinks an answer to knows 

b. *Dies ist ein Umstand wo/welcher [jeder 

this is a circumstance where/which everyone 
[der PG\ von gehort hat]] ti mit rechnen muB. 
who of heard has with count must 

The explanation for this difference given in Bennis 1987 is that, in 
Dutch, the relative clause, following its head noun, is not canonically 
governed, where canonical government amounts to government to 
the left in an OV language such as Dutch. Because German is similar 
to Dutch in this respect, this explanation would then seem to carry 
over to the cases in (10c) and (lib). However, it is anything but clear 
how gap licensing in terms of canonical government can be made to 
work for German in general. As has been observed, for instance, by 
Webelhuth (1992:107), German does allow finite complement clauses 
to precede as well as follow the matrix head, as in (12):^ 

(12) a. weil ich [daB Hans krank ist] nicht glaubenkann. 

because I that Hans sick is not believe can 
b. weil ich nicht glaubenkann [daB Hans krank ist]. 

because I not believe can that Hans sick is 

Bennis' account would thus predict that the verb glauben canonically 
governs its complement clause only in (12a). This would lead us to 
expect that in general, extraction is possible in this case, and not in 
{12b), hence mirroring the extraction asymmetries from PPs in Dutch 
and German. Yet. what we find is precisely the opposite; if a dialect 
allows extraction at all, it will only be in the case where the comple- 
ment follows the verb, as in (13a): 

(13) a. Wen hast du geglaubt [daB Maria liebt]? 

who have you believed that Maria loves 
'Who did you believe that Maria loves?' 
b. *Wen hast du [daB Maria liebt] geglaubt? 
who have you that Maria loves believed 

Following Webelhuth. we may then take these facts as indicating that 

308 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

CP complements in German are base-generated to the right of their 
verbal heads, which is also the direction of theta-government in this 
case. If this notion of government, rather than canonical government, 
is responsible for licensing A-bar positions, as Bennis & Hoekstra 
(1984:7) claim, it becomes difficult to see what exactly prevents 
long-distance dependencies within the adjunct phrase. As demon- 
strated in (14), such examples are ungrammatical in German: (cf. also 
Bennis 1986:54)^ 

(14) *Welche Bucherj hast Du 

which books have you 

[ohne zu wissen [cP ^'i [daB du anschauen PGj durftest]]] 
without to know that you look. at could 

ti durchgeblattert? 
browsed. through 

What I take this discussion to show is that the occurrence of 
candidate PG cases in German is significantly more limited than in 
Dutch, which in turn is more restrictive than English. While the Dutch 
facts may still be subsumable under a general syntactic theory of gap 
licensing, the case for this approach in German is much more tenu- 
ous. This strongly suggests that explanations for putative parasitic 
gap constructions such as in (2), repeated here, ought to be sought 
without appealing to generalizations about syntactic dislocation phe- 

(2) a. Hans hat Mariai [ohne PG\ anzusehen] gekuBt. 
Hans has Maria without to. look. at kissed 

'Hans kissed Maria without looking at her.' 
b. Man hat Hansj [ohne PGj zu verstandigen] entlassen. 
one has Hans without to notify 

'They fired Hans without notifying him.' 

Thus, we now turn to evidence in favor of a lexically-based approach 
to PG constructions in German. 

4 . The case for a lexically-based approach to 
parasitic "gap" constructions 

The range of phenomena that remain as PG candidates consists 
of adverbial phrases with the verb in the form of a zM-infinitive. 
There are no more than three lexical items that can head such 
phrases: ohne ('without'), (an)statt ('instead of), and urn ('in order 
to'). When these elements take a full VP complement without gap, 
the phrases can occur either inside the Mittelfeld or extraposed, 
shown in (15) and (16): 

(15) a. Hans hat Maria [ohne sie anzusehen] gekuBt. 

Hans has Maria without her to. look. at kissed 
'Hans kissed Maria without looking at her.' 
b. Lisa hat Hans [anstatt ihn zu kiissen] geohrfeigt 

Lisa has Hans instead. of him to kiss slapped. the. face. 

'Lisa slapped Hans in the face instead of kissing him.' 

Kathol: Parasitic "gaps" in German revisited 


c. Lisa hat Hans [u m ihn zu iiberzeugen] belogen. 

Lisa has Hans in. order. to ihn to convince lied. to 

'Lisa lied to Hans in order to convince him.' 

(16) a. Hans hat Maria gekuBt [ohne sie anzusehen]. 

Hans has Maria kissed without her to. look. at 
'Hans kissed Maria without looking at her.' 

b. Lisa hat Hans geohrfeigt [anstatt ihn zu kiissen]. 
Lisa has Hans slapped. the. face instead. of him to kiss 
'Lisa slapped Hans in the face instead of kissing him.' 

c. Lisa hat Hans belogen [u m ihn zu iiberzeugen]. 
Lisa has Hans lied. to in. order. to ihn to convince 
'Lisa lied to Hans in order to convince him.' 

Looking at the pattern of grammaticality that emerges if any of the 
phrases in (15) contains a gap, anstatt-phrases enjoy wide-spread 
acceptance, while w/n -phrases are universally rejected. Judgments on 
ohne-phrases range greatly, but appear to be better than marginally 
acceptable to many speakers. 

(17) a. Lisa hat Hansi [anstatt PGi zu kiissen] geohrfeigt 

Lisa has Hans instead. of to kiss slapped. the. face 

b. *Lisa hat Hansi [u m PG[ zu iiberzeugen] belogen. 
Lisa has Hans in. order. to to convince lied. to 

If what licenses the missing constituent in the acceptable cases were 
truly syntactic in nature, this pattern of variation would be some- 
what surprising. Note also that if it is thought that the badness of 
(16c) is due to some semantic factor, we have no good account for 
why its English counterpart in (18) is okay. 

(18) This is the man that Lisa lied to in order to convince. 

I want to argue then that the putative parasitic gap construction 
shows the characteristic of an essentially lexically-based phe- 
nomenon. Moreover, I propose to treat such constructions as contain- 
ing no syntactically licensed gaps at all. If instead, we think of them 
as involving a much more local relationship between the PP-adjunct 
and the clause it modifies, the fact that no long-distance dependency 
may exist between the antecedent and its putative parasitic gap falls 
out for free. If the prepositional head is instrumentally involved in 
establishing the link between the adjunct and the modified verbal 
projection, it is immediately clear why no grammatical examples can 
be found without such a prepositional mediator. 

Specifically, what I propose is that prepositions such as ohne and 
(an)statt be given partial lexical descriptions along the lines in (19): 

/ piEAD I VFORM J-ff^L^ 
COMPs(v ^UBJ([][j]) 




C0MPS[2] _ 

310 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

This description embodies a number of assumptions about the repre- 
sentation of lexical information assumed in recent versions of Head- 
Driven Phrase Structure Grammar (HPSG, cf. Pollard & Sag 1994). 
Specifically, the infinitival complement of the preposition is given as 
the value of the COMPS attribute, while the value of the feature MOD 
states what the whole PP modifies, that is, a verbal projection — which 
I will here call V-bar for convenience. Note that the level of satura- 
tion of the latter, again given by a COMPS attribute, is given as the tag 
[2], that is, a variable over lists including the empty list. Whatever 
the instantiation, though, the level of saturation of the PP-adverbial 
is guaranteed to be exactly the same as that of the modified V due to 
structure sharing among both COMPS values. I refer to this character- 
istic (partial) unification of valence properties among modifier and 
modifiee as Valence Matching. 

There is also structure-sharing involved between the understood 
subject of the PP-adverbial and the syntactically expressed subject of 
the V-bar. Yet, the information shared only consists of the index, not 
the entire informational content. This is typical of the treatment of 
control phenomena in HPSG, and so I regard the linkage between the 
subjects not as part of the Valence Matching phenomenon proper, 
but rather as an instance of control. 

Given standard HPSG assumptions about how head-complement 
and head-adjunct relations project syntactically, the description in 

(19) will give rise to an analysis of sentences like (2a) as outlined in 

(20) (next page). 

Thus, the prepositional head ohne first combines with its transitive 
complement anzusehen. The resulting PP adverbial ohne anzusehen 
in turn modifies the transitive verb gekiifit, matching the latter's va- 
lence properties. Finally, the accusative NP Maria is supplied which, 
due to structure-sharing, serves as the direct object of both 
anzusehen and gekiifit. 

The description in (19) makes a number of predictions which I 
turn to next. First, it gives us a straightforward account of why the 
example in (21) (cf. Grewendorf 1990:305) is ungrammatical. 


ein Mann, 
a man 

der [coMPS <NP[ACC]> ohne 
who without 

zu kennen] 
to know 




Here, there is simply no NP in the matrix clause which could serve as 
the missing object in the PP-adverbial. The nominative relative pro- 
noun der is not eligible as it cannot serve as a subject and object at 
the same time — the passive predicate notwithstanding. 5 


Kathol: Parasitic "gaps" in German revisited 
VP[SUBJ <NP[7]>] 





SUB J <NP[7]> 
C0MB8\j\< NP[ACC]> 


COMFb\j\< NP[ACC]) 

SUBJ <NP[7]> 
COMPs[i]< NP[ACC]) 






Second, the description (19) requires that the COMPS list of the 
PP-adverbial match that of the modified V in all respects including 
case. Thus, it correctly predicts that the missing constituent can be a 
dative NP, as in (22):6 

(22) a. Maurice hat seiner Tochter 

Maurice has his daughter-DAT 
[ohne Geld zu geben] helfen konnen. 
without money to give help can 

'Maurice was able to help his daughter without giving her 
b. Maurice hat seiner Tochter 
Maurice has his daughter-DAT 

[anstatt zu helfen] einen Kiindigungsbrief geschickl. 
instead. of to help an eviction. letter sent 

'Maurice sent his daughter an eviction note instead of 
helping her.' 

As a further direct consequence. Valence Matching with mixed 
case requirements should lead to reduced acceptability, which indeed 
seems to be borne out by the facts in (23). where PP and V select 
dative and accusative arguments respectively in (23a) and vice versa 
in (23b). 

(23) a. ?*Hans hat seiner Tochter 

Hans has his daughter-DAT 
[cOMPS <NP[ACC]> ohne davon zu informieren] 

without thereof to inform 
DM 100 iiberwiesen. 
DM 100 wired 

312 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

b. *Hans hat seine Tochter 

Hans has his daughter-ACC 
[coMPS <NP[DAT]> ohne Geld zu geben] 

without money to give 
unterstiitzen konnen. 
support can 

Fourth, since the variable [2] in (19) can instantiate lists of 
length greater than one, it should be possible to find examples where 
more than one complement is shared. While somewhat marginal, the 
example in (24) indeed seems to fulfill the prediction by allowing 
both direct and indirect object to be shared among PP and modified 

(24) ?Maurice hat den Kafer seiner Tochter 

Maurice has the VW Beetle-ACC his daughter-DAT 
[coMPS <NP[ACC], NP[DAT]> anstatt zu verkaufen] 

instead. of to sell 
einfach geschenkt 
simply given 

'Maurice simply gave the VW to his daughter for free instead of 
selling it to her.' 

Next, let me point out that on the Valence Matching approach to 
PG we have an alternative explanation of why PPs with missing 
constituents show poor extraposability, as shown in (25): (cf. Felix 

(25) a. *Hans hat Maria gekiiBt 

Hans has Maria kissed 
[coMPS <NP[ACC] > ohne anzuschauen]. 
without to. look. at 
b. Hans hat Maria gekiiBt 
Hans has Maria kissed 
[coMPS<> ohne sie anzuschauen]. 
without her 

Felix 1985 tries to reduce this fact to a configuration in which one 
gap c-commands the other. However, it is also a fact that in general, 
only fully phrasal constituents may extrapose in German, which in 
HPSG-terms correspond to constituents with an empty COMPS-Iist. 
Then, we can simply subsume the badness of (25) under this gener- 
alization without having to appeal to the existence of scrambling 
traces or parasitic gaps in the matrix clause and PP-adverbial 

Finally, I would like to mention that the current proposal is sim- 
ilar in certain respects to the one advanced in Yatabe 1993. While 
there are some differences, the two crucially agree in the way they 
present a solution to a challenge to Webelhuth's analysis, reported in 
Mahajan 1990:56. The question is, why the sentence in (26), with 
both direct and indirect object before the PP-adverbial, should be 
bad. 7 

Kathol: Parasitic "gaps" in German revisited 313 

(26) a. ??Peter hat jeden Gast seinem Nachbarn 

Peter has each guest-ACC his neighbor-DAT 
[<NP[ACC]> ohne anzuschauen] 

without to. look. at 
[< NP[ACC], NP[DAT]> vorgestcllt] . 
b. Peter hat jeden Gast 
Peter has each guest-ACC 
[<NP[ACC]> ohne anzuschauen] 

without to. look. at 
[<NP[ACC]> seinem Nachbarn vorgestellt]. 
his neighbor-DAT introduced 

If we assume that the Valence Matching configurations impose a 
parallelism constraint in terms of how the PP and V are linearized, it 
is clear that only in (26b), but not in (26a), do the juxtaposed con- 
stituents have matching valence properties. In this respect Valence 
Matching can be viewed as "quasi-coordinate". Yet, it should be clear 
that, due to its local nature in German, the construction is not an 
Across-the-Board phenomenon proper, as has occasionally been sug- 
gested for English, for instance by Huybregts and v. Riemsdijk 1984 
and Williams ^1990. 

5. Conclusion 

In concluding, I hope to have cast significant doubt on the often- 
made claim that German adverbial PPs with missing constituents are 
indeed isomorphic to English parasitic gap constructions. Rather, the 
lexically-based picture developed here suggests that they may, be 
more appropriately grouped with other local phenomena such as, 
perhaps, serial verbs, exemplified in (29) from Sranan (Suriname), 
where a single object serves as a complement of different verbs. 
(Migge 1993:101) 

(29) Me teki wan tiki naki a dagu. 
I take one stick beat the dog 
'1 struck the dog with a stick.' 

If I am right, it follows that if there is indeed evidence for scram- 
bling in German as genuine movement, the alleged German parasitic 
gap construction will in all likelihood not be part of it. 


* 1 would like to thank Carl Pollard and Gcrt Webelhuth for dis- 
cussion and support. 

' Cf.. for instance, Grewendorf 1990:304: "[T]he fundamental 
characteristics of parasitic gaps that are usually derived from uni- 
versal principles with respect to other languages can also be estab- 
lished with respect to German." 

314 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

2 Felix also discusses PG-like constructions in Bavarian German, 

(i) Das ist der Kerl, den wenn ich e erwisch, erschlag ich e. 
That is the guy who when I catch beat. dead I 

'That is the guy who I will beat to death when I catch him.' 

which, however, are utterly impossible in Standard varieties and 
hence will not be considered here. 

3 Note that the presence of the negation and the auxiliary do not 
challenge Webelhuth's basic claim about leftward government as ex- 
amples like the following are also equally grammatical: 

(i) daB ich [daB Hans krank ist] glaube. 
that I that Hans sick is believe 

^ Interestingly, Bennis: 1987:52-54 does discuss the Dutch equiv- 
alent of (14), which is also ungrammatical. He argues that the 
ungrammaticality is an ECP effect induced by lack of canonical gov- 
ernment under the assumption that parasitic gaps are licensed non- 
derivationally. This, however, is in contradiction to the position taken 
by Chomsky 1986:56, who argues for a null-operator, and hence 
derivational theory of PG licensing. 

5 Grewendorf argues that (21) is indirect evidence for pro- 
subjects in German because if (21) didn't contain such an empty sub- 
ject element, there would be no way to rule out the sentence as a 
violation of the anti-c-command constraint on parasitic gaps. The fact 
that this argument is undermined by the arguably simpler explana- 
tion offered here is in accord with the generally dubious status of 
/7ro-subjects in German. 

6 Some native speakers report reduced acceptability for the ex- 
ample in (22). This would be expected if for them, complements 
combine with heads strictly according to obliqueness ordering, that 
is, if dative objects combine before accusative ones. 

'7 Similar examples are actually judged to be only slightly mar- 
ginal in Lee and Santorini 1991:8. While I do find a noticeable differ- 
ence in grammaticality between (26a) and (26b), it is consistent with 
the overall position take here that the extent to which a parallelism 
constraint exists for quasi-coordinate structures (in analogy to "true" 
coordination) should be among the many degrees of dialectal varia- 
tion among speakers. 


BENNIS, H. 1987. Gaps and dummies. Foris. 

Bennis, H., & T. Hoekstra. 1984. Parasitic gaps in Dutch. In 

Proceedings of NELS 15, Amherst, MA: GLSA. 
Chomsky, N. 1982. Some concepts and consequences of the theory of 

government and binding. MIT Press. 
. 1986. Barriers. MIT Press. 

Kathol: Parasitic "gaps" in German revisited 315 

Felix, S. 1985. Parasitic gaps in German. In Erklarende Syntax des 
Deutschen. ed. by Abraham, 173-201. Tiibingen: Niemeyer. 

GREWENDORF, G. 1988. Aspekte der deutschen Syntax. Tubingen: Narr. 

. 1990. Small pro in German. In Scrambling and barriers, ed. by 

Grewendorf & Sternefeld. John Benjamins. 

HUYBREGTS. H. & H. V. Riemsdijk. 1984. Parasitic gaps and ATB. In 
Proceedings of NELS 15, Amherst, MA: GLSA. 

Lee, Y-S. & B. Santorini. 1991. Towards resolving Webelhuth's para- 
dox: Evidence from German and Korean. MS, University of 

Mahajan, a. 1990. The A/A-bar distinction and movement theory. 
MIT Ph.D. dissertation. 

MiGGE, B. 1993. Substrate influence in Creole genesis: The case of se- 
rial verb constructions in Sranan. Ohio State University M.A. 

Pollard, C. In press. On head nonmovement. In Discontinuous con- 
stituency, ed. by Horck & Sijtsma. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. 

, & I. A. Sag. 1994. Head-driven phrase structure grammar. 

University of Chicago Press. 

Postal, P. 1993. Parasitic gaps and the across-the-board phe- 
nomenon. Linguistic Inquiry 24:735-54. 

. 1994. Parasitic and pseudoparasitic gaps. Linguistic Inquiry 


Reape, M. 1993. A formal theory of word order: A case study in West 
Germanic. University of Edinburgh Ph.D. dissertation. 

. In press. Getting things in order. In Discontinuous constituency, 

ed. by Horck & Sijtsma. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. 

Webelhuth, G. 1989. Syntactic saturation phenomena and the modern 
Germanic languages. University of Massachusetts Ph.D. 

. 1992. Principles and parameters of syntactic saturation. New 

York: Oxford University Press. 

Williams, E. 1990. The ATB theory of parasitic gaps. The Linguistic 
Review 6:265-79. 

Yatabe, S. 1993. Scrambling and Japanese phrase structure. Stanford 
University Ph.D. dissertation. 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 

Volume 24. Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Byong-Kwon Kim 
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 

This paper provides a structural characterization of 
across-the-board (ATB) gap parallelism through a con- 
trastive analysis of English and Korean. I argue that the 
generalization underlying ATB gap parallelism involves a 
structural distinction between VP-internal and VP-external 
positions. I propose the generalization that ATB gaps must 
pertain either to VP-external or VP-internal positions 
across all conjuncts. I further show that the generalization 
is derived in a principled way from the Empty Category 
Principle (ECP). 

1. Introduction 

Since Ross's (1967) seminal work on ATB extraction in coordi- 
nate structures, various accounts have been given about the restric- 
tions on ATB extraction (Williams 1978, Gazdar 1981, Woolford 1987 
among others). In this paper, I argue, on the basis of the contrastive 
analysis of English and Korean, that ATB extraction should be li- 
censed by a structural parallelism requirement for gaps. Specifically, 
I argue for the structural generalization that ATB dependencies per- 
tain to VP-internal or VP-external positions throughout all conjuncts. 
Then 1 show that this generalization is derived in a principled way 
from Rizzi's (1990) formulation of the ECP. As a supporting evidence 
for my generalization, I present ATB extraction in Tagalog. Finally I 
briefly survey alternative analyses. 

2. ATB gap parallelism 

Consider the ATB gap phenomena in English in (1). (la-b) show 
that two subject gaps or two object gaps are well-formed ATB depen- 
dencies. (Ic-d) show that one object gap and one embedded subject 
gap form a well-formed ATB dependency. On the other hand, in (le), 
one gap is object and one gap is subject, but ATB dependency is in- 
formed. Likewise, in (10, one gap is subject and one gap is embedded 
subject, but ATB dependency is ill-formed. 

(1) a. Tell me who t likes beer and t hates wine. 

b. Tell me what adults like t and children hate t. 

c. Tell me who Sarah likes t and Jill thinks t is a jerk. 

d. Tell me who everyone allows t to win and Margaret loathes t. 

e. *Tell me who Jill admires t and t hates children. 

f. *Tell me who everyone allows t to win and t is a jerk. 

(Woolford 1987) 

318 Studies in tiie Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

For the ATB phenomena in (1), Gazdar (1981) proposed the gener- 
alization that ATB gaps in English must be consistently either matrix 
subject gaps (matrix with respect to the clauses) or non-matrix sub- 
ject gaps throughout all conjuncts. In (la), both gaps are subjects in 
the conjoined matrix clause, hence they are acceptable. In (lb,c,d), no 
gaps are subjects in the conjoined matrix clause, hence they are ac- 
ceptable. In (le,f), one gap is the subject in the matrix clause, 
whereas the other one is not, hence they are not acceptable. 

However, data from Korean demonstrate that the subject- 
nonsubject distinction does not hold for some languages. Let us look 
at the examples in (2), which involve Topicalization.' 

(2) a. Mary-nuni salam-tul-i [ t; John-ul salangha-ko] 

M.-Top person-PL-Nom J. -Ace love-and 

[ ti Bill-ul miweha]-n-ta-ko malha-n-ta 

B.-Acc hate-Pres-Dec-C say-Pres-Dec 
'As for Mary, people say she loves John and hates Bill.' 

b. Mary-nuni [John-i t; salangha-ko] [Bill-i tj miweha]-n-ta 
M-Top J-Nom love-and B-Nom hate-Pres-Dec 
'As for Mary, John loves and Bill hates her.' 

c. Mary-nuni [John-i ti ton-ul cwu-ess-ko] [ ti ku 
M-Top J-Nom money-Acc give-Pst-and the 
ton-ulo os-ul sa-ess]-ta 

money-with clothes-Acc buy-Pst-Dec 

'As for Mary, John gave her money and she bought clothes 
with that money.' 

In all these examples, ATB dependencies between the antecedent 
and gaps are well-formed. In (2a), Mary is the subject in both con- 
juncts and in (2b), Mary is the object in both conjuncts. On the other 
hand, in (2c), Mary is the indirect object in the first conjunct, while it 
is the subject in the second conjunct. Nevertheless, the ATB depen- 
dency is well-formed. These data are problematic from an analysis 
based on the subject-nonsubject distinction. 

Relative construction also shows the same phenomena, as given 
in (3). 

(3) a. [ ti John-ul salangha-ko] [ ti Bill-ul miweha]-nun Maryi 

J-Acc love-and B-Acc hate-Mod 

'Mary who t loves John and t hates Bill.' 

b. [John-i ti salangha-ko] [Bill-i ti miweha]-nun Maryi 

J-Nom love-and B-Nom hate-Mod 

'Mary who John loves t and Bill hates t.' 

c. [John-i ti ton-ul cwu-ess-ko] [ ti ku ton-ulo 

J-Nom money-Acc give-Pst-and the money-with 

os-ul sa]-n Maryi 

clothes-Acc buy-Mod 
'Mary who John gave t money and t bought clothes with that 


Kim: VP-intemal subject hypothesis and ATB gap parallelism 319 

(3a) and (3b) are relativization of subjects and objects, respectively. 
On the other hand, in (3c), an object and a subject are relativized, but 
the ATB dependency is still well-formed. 

ATB extraction out of an embedded clause is consistent with the 
observation described above, as exemplified in (4). 

(4) a. [apeci-ka tj cohaha-ko] [salamtul-i [emeni-ka l\ miweha]- 

father-Nom love-and people-Nom mother-Nom hate- 
n-ta-ko malha]-nun Maryj 
Pres-Dec-C say-Mod 

'Mary who father loves t and they say that mother hates t.' 
b. [ tj apeci-lul cohaha-ko] [salamtul-i [emeni-ka tj 
father-Acc love-and people-Nom mother-Nom 
miweha]-n-ta-ko malha]-nun Maryj 
hate-Pres-Dec-C say-Mod 
'Mary who t loves father and people say that mother hates t.' 

In (4a), ATB gaps are matrix object and embedded object. In (4b), 
the gaps are matrix subject and embedded object. In all these cases, 
ATB dependencies are well-formed. 

Summarizing what we observed so far, the licensing of ATB de- 
pendencies is determined by the subject-nonsubject distinction in 
English, while it is not in Korean. 

Why do ATB dependencies behave differently in English and 
Korean? How can we explain the variation in a principled way? 

3. Analysis 

In this paper, I argue that, assuming the VP-internal subject 
hypothesis a la Koopman & Sportiche (1991), the variation regarding 
ATB dependencies between English and Korean can be derived 
independently from the structural generalization in (5). 

(5) ATB gaps must pertain either to VP-external or VP- 
internal positions across all conjuncts. 

This generalization relies on the assumption that the subject posi- 
tions of the two languages are different, as will be discussed below. I 
begin with a brief discussion of the VP-internal subject hypothesis. 

The key idea of the VP-internal subject hypothesis is that sub- 
ject NP is generated in Spec VP or somewhere else inside VP (Koop- 
man & Sportiche 1991, Kitagawa 1986, Burton & Grimshaw 1992 
among others). To receive nominative case by the functional head 
INFL (more specifically, AGR) via Spec-head agreement (Chomsky 
1986), 2 the subject NP is raised from Spec VP to Spec IP, as rep- 
resented in (6, next page). 

In the case of English, the subject is generated within VP and 
later raised to Spec IP due to case requirements (Koopman & 
Sportiche 1991, Burton & Grimshaw 1992). 

320 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

(6) IP 

/ \ 

NPi I ' 

/ \ 
/ \ 
ti v 


However, the story is different in Korean. It is fairly well known 
that languages like Korean and Japanese do not have AGR, which 
controls agreement between a verb and its subject, as argued in Y-S. 
Lee (1990) and Y-J. Kim (1990) among others. A natural consequence 
of lack of AGR is that the nominative case is not assigned by AGR in 
Korean. If so, there is no reason to raise a subject NP from Spec VP to 
Spec IP. Alternatively, one might say that TENSE inside INFL is a 
nominative case assigner.^ However, this hypothesis is not convincing 
if we consider the case where the nominative case is assigned even 
in a tenseless clause. The causative construction is such a case, as 
shown in (7): In (7a), the embedded clause is not specified with 
tense, while it is in (7b). 

(7) a. John-i Mary-ka nolayha-key ha-ess-ta 

J-Nom M-Nom sing-Caus make-Pst-Dec 

'John made Mary to sing.' 
b. *John-i Mary-ka nolayha-ess-key ha-ess-ta 
J-Nom M-Nom sing-Pst-Caus make-Pst-Dec 

'John made Mary to sing.' 

What the contrast in (7) shows is that the causative construction does 
not allow TENSE in the embedded clause, but the embedded subject 
is still assigned nominative case, as shown in (7a). 

If raising of the subject to Spec IP is motivated by case require- 
ment, there is no reason to raise the subject to Spec IP in Korean, 
since nominative case is assigned without INFL. Therefore, the hy- 
pothesis that the subject remains in VP-internal position in Korean 
seems tenable.'* 

With this theoretical ground, I assume that the subject does not 
raise to Spec IP in the overt syntax in Korean. The sentence struc- 
tures of English and Korean will then be as shown in (8). 

(8) a. English b. Korean 


/ \ / \ 

subjecti I ' I ' 

/ \ / \ 


/ \ / \ 

ti V subject V 

/ \ / \ 

V object object V 

Kim: VP-intemal subject hypothesis and ATB gap parallelism 321 

Let us now see how the generalization in (5) accounts for ATB 
dependencies in English and Korean. Consider the case of English in 
(1), ATB dependencies between matrix subject and non-matrix sub- 
ject in (le-f) are ruled out, since the matrix subject position is VP- 
external, whereas other positions are within the VP of the conjoined 
IP. Other types of dependencies are all well-formed: ATB depen- 
dency between matrix object and embedded subject is also well- 
formed, since both are within VPs of conjoined IPs. Thus, ATB de- 
pendencies in English are correctly accounted for by the gener- 
alization in (5). 

The ATB dependencies of Korean exemplified in (2), (3), and (4) 
are correctly explained by the generalization in (5) as well: Since the 
subject is VP-internal in Korean, it is predicted that no distinction is 
made between subject gaps and nonsubject gaps regarding ATB 

Therefore, the variation regarding ATB dependencies between 
the two languages is correctly accounted for in my generalization. 

However, the generalization in (5) is not sufficient. Consider the 
contrast in (9), which shows that morphological case must match in 
ATB extraction. 

(9) a. Kay-lulj [John-i tj sa-ess-ko] [Bill-i tj phal-ess]-ta 
dog-Acc J-Nom buy-Pst-and B-Nom sell-Pst-Dec 
'A dog, John bought t and Bill sold t.' 
b. *Kay-lul/kai [John-i tj sa-ess-ko] [tj Bill-ul mwul-essj-ta 
dog-Acc/Nom J-Nom buy-Pst-and B-Acc bite-Pst-Dec 
'A dog, John bought t and t bit Bill.' 

In (9a), the sentence-initial NP kay-lul is scrambled across-the-board 
from object position in each conjunct. Since the NP is assigned ac- 
cusative case in each conjunct, no case conflict arises, hence it is ac- 
ceptable. In (9b), on the other hand, the scrambled NP is assigned ac- 
cusative in the first conjunct, while it is assigned nominative in the 
second conjunct. Regardless of whether the scrambled NP kay is 
marked with nominative or accusative, the sentence is ruled out be- 
cause of the incompatibility of morphological cases. If morphological 
case does not match, ATB extractions are independently ruled out. 
Therefore, we need the condition in (10) for morphological 
requirement in ATB dependencies. 

( 10) Condition on ATB dependencies: 

Actual morphological case forms must match between the 
elements in ATB dependencies. 

This morphological requirement is in general necessary for heavily 

agglutinative languages such as Korean, Hungarian (Szabolcsi, p.c), 

and Polish (Dyla 1984), where all NPs are assigned morphological 

322 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

How can the generalization in (5) be explained in a principled 
way? Suppose that the distinction between VP-external and VP-in- 
ternal positions is parallel to the classical distinction between subject 
and object positions. If so, the distinction between VP-external and 
VP-internal positions can be reduced to the ECP-theoretic asymmetry 
between subject and object. 

I propose that the generalization in (5) is subsumed under 
Rizzi's (1990) head-government definition of the ECP. Some relevant 
definitions are given in (11). 

(11) a. ECP: A nonpronominal empty category must be properly 

b. X is properly head-governed if it is governed by a head 
governor within the immediate projection of the head. 

c. X head governs Y iff 

i) X is head governor ({[+/-V, +/-N], Agr, T}). 

ii) X m-commands Y. 

iii) no barrier intervenes (where a barrier (for government) 
refers to an XP which is not directly selected by an X^ not 
distinct from [fV] (i.e. V, C, or I) (Rizzi 1990: fn 6. See also 
Cinque (1991:42))). 

iv) Relativized Minimality is respected. 

The intuition underlying the head-government approach is that 
since a Spec position is not properly head-governed by its head, a 
gap in the Spec position will be ruled out if it is not properly gov- 
erned by an outside head. The fundamental distinction between En- 
glish and Korean follows from the fact that INFL head-governs the 
VP-internal subject position, while it cannot head-govern the VP- 
external subject position. 

Let us look at the examples one by one. First, all the English ex- 
amples in (1) can be correctly accounted for. In (lb), both gaps sat- 
isfy the ECP, since each gap is properly governed by the verb in its 
conjunct. In (Id), the embedded subject gap in the first conjunct is 
properly governed by the matrix verb allow. In this case the em- 
bedded IP is not a barrier, since it is selected by the matrix verb. The 
second gap is also properly governed, because it is a complement of 
the verb. To explain (la) and (Ic), we need to mention another hy- 
pothesis which was argued for by Rizzi. The hypothesis is that a null 
complementizer becomes a head governor if its Spec is filled with a 
wh-phrase or an intermediate trace of a wh-phrase. Even if the null 
complementizer is not a head governor in itself as specified in 
(llc(i)), it is licensed to be a head governor by inheritance of [Agr] 
feature from a wh-phrase in Spec CP in terms of Spec-head agree- 
ment. Given that (la) is considered a VP-coordination (Woolford 
1987), the subject gap will be properly head-governed by C[Agr], 
satisfying the ECP, as shown in (12a). Likewise, (Ic) satisfies the ECP. 
As shown in (12b), the first gap (tl) is properly head-governed by 
the verb and the second gap (t2) by the null C[Agr], which is licensed 
to be a head-governor by the intermediate wh-trace (t3) in its Spec. 

Kim: VP-intemal subject hypothesis and ATB gap parallehsm 323 

The intermediate trace (t3) is properly head-governed by the matrix 
verb thinks. 

(12) a. (part of (la)) b. (part of (Ic)) 


/ \ / \ 

whoi C ' whoi C ' 

/ \ / \ 


[Agr]i / \ / \ 

ti I ' IP IP 

/ \ / \ / \ 

I VP I • I ' 

/ \ / \ / \ 


/_\ /_\ / \ / \ 

V til V CP 

/ \ 

ti3 C 

/ \ 


[Agr] , / \ 
ti2 I ' 

The unacceptable cases in (le) and (If) can be explained as 
follows: Let us look at (le) represented in (13). 

(13) (part of (le)) 

/ \ 
whOi C ' 

/ \ 
C IPl 

[Agr] , / \ 

IP2 IP3 

/ \ / \ 

I ' ti2 I ' 
/ \ / \ 


/ \ / \ 

V til V NP 

The first gap is properly head-governed by the verb. However, 
the second gap is not properly governed because of the intervening 
barrier [IP1-I-1P3]. In (13), what C directly selects is IP2 and IP3, not 
the adjoined two-segment categories [IP1-I-IP2] and [IP1-I-IP3]. Given 
that the adjoined category [IP1+IP3] dominates IP3 (Chomsky 1994), 
it is an intervening barrier for government by the definition in 
(llc(iii)). Hence (le) is ruled out by the ECP. Likewise, (If) is ruled 
out by the ECP since the second gap is not properly head-governed 
just like the second gap in (le). 

324 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

On the other hand, in Korean, a subject-nonsubject distinction 
does not arise. The subject position is properly head-governed by the 
external proper head governor INFL (Tense in Rizzi's term). In this 
case, VP is not a barrier, since it is directly selected by INFL. The 
object position is properly governed by the verb. Therefore, both 
subject gaps and object gaps are properly head-governed, satisfying 
the ECP. 

In summary, the difference in ATB dependencies between En- 
glish and Korean follows from the structural generalization that ATB 
gaps must pertain either to VP-external or VP-internal positions 
across all conjuncts, given that morphological case is consistent with 
each other. The principle which governs the generalization is the ECP. 
What is significant in my analysis is that ATB phenomena are sub- 
sumed under independently motivated general principles. 

One potential problem in my approach is that if adjoined IP cat- 
egory is a barrier, all ATB extractions are marked as 1-Subjacency 
violation in Chomsky's (1986) terminology, despite the fact that ATB 
extractions are better in acceptability than 1-Subjacency violation in 
syntactic islands. However, this problem does not arise, since ad- 
joined IP creates a barrier for government, not for movement. 

4. Further examples 

In this section, I present more cases which support my analysis. 
The first case is one where scrambling applies across-the-board to a 
subject and an object, as exemplified in (14), where the first conjunct 
in each sentence contains a psych predicate. 

(14) a. Nwukwu-eykeyi salam-tul-i [vp ti [v yangsik-i 

who-Dat people-Pl-Nom food-Nom 

philyoha-ko]] [vp John-i [v' tj towum-ul cwu-ess-ta]]-ko 
necessary-and J-Nom help-Acc give-Pst-Dec-C 


'Who do people think [t needs food] and [John gave help to t]?' 
b. Nwu-kai [vp John-eykey [y t, salangsulep-ko]] [vp tj [v 
who-Nom J-Dat lovely-and 

yeyppukey hayngtongha]]-ni? 
cutely behave-Ques 

'Who is lovely to John and behaves cutely?' 

In these examples, the psych predicates take a dative or nominative 
(Experiencer) subject and a nominative Theme object. According to 
Belleti & Rizzi (1988) and Y-J. Kim (1990), the base position of the 
Experiencer subject is Spec VP, while the Theme object is inside V. 
In (14a), dative-marked Nwukwii (who) is scrambled across-the- 
board. Given that scrambling is IP- or VP-adjunction (Saito 1985), 
the landing site of the scrambled phrase is VP-external. If so, scram- 
bling leaves a gap in Spec VP position in the first conjunct, but the 
gap in the second conjunct is inside V, since the gap is the dative 

Kim: VP-intemal subject hypothesis and ATB gap parallelism 325 

object of the ditransitive verb cwu-ta (give). In this case, a mor- 
phological conflict does not arise because the extracted elements are 
assigned the same morphological Case. My analysis predicts this ATB 
dependency between subject and object to be acceptable, since both 
positions are VP-internal. In (14b), the gap in the first conjunct is 
inside V, since it is the nominative object of the psych predicate 
salangsulep- (lovely), while the gap in the second conjunct is in Spec 
VP, since the gap is the nominative subject of an agentive verb. ATB 
dependency in this sentence is also correctly predicted to be accept- 
able in my analysis. 

Another case is the Focus construction, which I briefly explain 
below. The Focus construction appears in the context where elements 
of a sentence are extracted to the sentence-initial position, receiving 
focus like the cleft-construction in English. Examples are given in 

(15) a. Mary-ka, John-i salangha-n-ta 

M-Nom J-Nom love-Pres-Dec 
'It is Mary who John loves.' 

In (15), the NP Mary-ka is construed as object, even if it are marked 
with nominative. The Focus elements are given stress and need a lit- 
tle phonological pause afterwards. They are uniquely marked with 
focus case -KA/-I, which is morphologically the same as the nomi- 
native case marker. The focus phrase is interpreted exhaustively. In 
(15), Mary is the Focus phrase and the interpretation is that it is 
Mary, not anyone else, who John loves. The focus construction in- 
volves movement in that it is subject to island constraints, as shown 
in (16). 

(16) a. Pata-KAj, [Mary-ka [John-i t, kuliweha-n-ta-ko] 

sea-Foe M-Nom J-Nom miss-Pres-Dec-C 

'It is the sea that Mary thinks John misses t.' 
b. *Pata-KAi, [Mary-ka [ tj tj kuliweha-nun salamj-ul] 
sea-Foe M-Nom miss-Mod man-Acc 


'It is the sea that Mary know the man who misses t.' 

In (16a), a Focus phrase is extracted out of the complement clause, 
whereas in (16b), it is extracted out of the complex NP complement. 
The contrast between (16a) and (16b) shows island effects of Focus 
extraction. If island effects are diagnostic of movement (Chomsky 
1977), the Focus construction involves movement. 

With this background in mind, let us see the ATB dependencies 
in the Focus construction, given in (17). where the sentence-initial 
Focus phrases are ATB-extracted. 

326 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(17) a. Mary-KAj, salamtul-i [ tj John-ul cohaha-ess-ko] [ tj Bill-ul 

M-Foc people-Nom J-Acc love-Pst-and B-Acc 

miweha-ess-ta]-ko malha-n-ta 

hate-Pst-Dec-C say-Pst-Dec 

'It is Mary that they say that t loved John and t hated Bill.' 

b. Mary-KAj, [John-i tj salangha-ess-ko] [Bill-i 
M-Foc J-Nom love-Pst-and B-Nom 
tj miweha-ess]-ta 

'It is Mary that John loved t and Bill hated t.' 

c. Mary-KAj, [John-i tj salangha-ess-ko] [ tj Bill-ul 
M-Foc J-Nom love-Pst-and B-Acc 


'It is Mary that John loved t and t hated Bill.' 

In all these examples, ATB dependencies are well-formed. In (17a), 
both gaps are the subjects, and in (17b), they are the objects. On the 
other hand, in (17c), the gap in the first conjunct is the object, but 
that in the second conjunct is the subject. Nevertheless, the ATB 
dependency is well-formed. This is also predicted in my analysis. 

5. Implications and consequences 

The prediction of my analysis is that if ATB gaps are consis- 
tently VP-internal or VP-external, they are well-formed. In this sec- 
tion, I show ATB extraction in Tagalog as a supporting evidence for 
my generalization. 

The generalization about extraction in Tagalog is that extraction 
is allowed only for the structural subject which has been called Topic, 
since it is uniquely marked with the Topic marker ang or si. (Keenan 
& Comrie 1977, Guilfoyle et al. 1992). Any argument, e.g. agent or 
theme, can be the structural subject and if an argument appears as 
the structural subject, then the verbal morphemes reflect the the- 
matic role of the structural subject, as shown in (18).5 In (18a), the 
verbal morpheme um indicates that an agent tao (man) is the struc- 
tural subject. In (18b), the verbal morpheme ni indicates that a 
theme kotse (car) is the structural subject. 

(18) a. Bumili ng kotse para kay Maria ang tao 

AT-bought Acc-car for Obi-Maria Top-man 
'The man bought the car for Maria.' 
b. Binili ng tao para kay Maria ang kotse 

TT-bought Gen-man for Obi-Maria Top-car 
'The car was bought by the man for Maria.' 

If an argument becomes a structural subject, only that argument can 
be extracted in the sentence, as shown in (19). 

(19) a. Sino ang bumili ng kotse para kay Maria? 

Who Comp AT-bought Acc-car for Obi-Maria 
'Who bought the car for Maria?' 

Kim: VP-intemal subject hypothesis and ATB gap parallehsm 327 

b. *Ano ang bumili para kay Maria ang tao? 

What Comp AT-bought for Obi-Maria Top-man 
'What did the man buy for Maria?' 

(19a) is acceptable since the structural subject, tao (man), is ex- 
tracted. (19b) is unacceptable, since a nonsubject is extracted. 
According to Guilfoyle et al. (1992), the structural subject is base- 
generated within VP and raised to Spec IP to receive Case. Extraction 
occurs only from Spec IP position, as represented in (20). 

(20) CP 

/ \ 
whi C 

/ \ 

/ \ 
I' ti2 (structural subject (or Topic) position) 
/ \ 

Now, let us look at the extraction facts in coordination. ATB-ex- 
traction is well-formed if both gaps are in the VP-external position, 
regardless of whether they are agents or themes. However, ATB-ex- 
traction is ill-formed if one gap is VP-external while the other is VP- 
internal, as shown in (21): (21a) is well-formed, since both gaps are 
VP-external Topic. On the other hand, (21b) is ruled out, since the 
gap in the second conjunct is VP-external Topic, while it is not in the 
first conjunct. Note that gap positions are predicted by verbal 

(21) a. Sino ang bumili ng kolse para kay Maria na 

Who Comp AT-bought Acc-car for Obi-Maria and 
ginagalang ni Juan? 
TT-respects Gen-Juan 

'Who bought the car for Maria and Juan respects?' 
b. *Sino ang binili para kay Maria ang kotse na 

Who Comp TT-bought for Obi-Maria Top-car and 
ginagalang ni Juan? 
TT-respects Gen-Juan 
'Who bought the car for Maria and Juan respects?' 

The derivation of the examples in (21a, b) will be like (21a', b'). In 
(21a'), extraction applied across-the-board to the Topic positions. 
However, in (21b'), one gap is VP-internal and the other is VP-exter- 
nal (i.e. Topic position). Therefore the contrast in (21) follows from 
the generalization that ATB dependencies pertain to VP-intcrnal or 
VP-external positions. 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(21) a' . CP 
/ \ 
whi/j C 

/ \ 

/ \ 


/ \ / \ 

I' ti I' tj 

/ \ / \ 


b' . *CP 

/ \ 
whi/j C ' 
/ \ 

/ \ 


/ \ / \ 

I ' Top I ' t j 

/ \ / \ 


/_\ /_\ 


Another prediction of my analysis is that if both gaps are VP- 
internal, ATB dependencies are also well-formed. Such a case is 
found in the Tagalog sentences with verbs in recent past (RP) tense, 
in which all arguments remain VP-internal. The hypothesis that all 
arguments remain VP-internal in RP tense construction is supported 
by the fact that in this construction, no argument is marked with 
Topic marker and any argument is extractable in a sentence. Given 
that all arguments in RP tense construction are VP-internal, ATB ex- 
traction of an agent and a theme will be predicted to be acceptable. 
Such is the case, as shown in (22), where the agent in the first 
conjunct and the theme in the second conjunct are ATB-extracted. 

(22) Sino ang kabibili lang ng tela para kay Maria na kakikita 
Who Comp RP-buy just Acc-cloth for Obi-Maria and RP-meet 
lang ni Juan ? 
just Gen-Juan 

'Who t has just bought some clothes for Maria and Juan has just 
met t?' 

Following Guilfoyle et al.'s (1992) generalization that extraction is 
possible only from Spec IP, I assume that the extraction of VP-inter- 
nal arguments occurs successive-cyclically via the empty Spec IP. 
The derivation of (22) will be represented like (22'). 



/ \ 





/ \ 

/ \ 

I' ti2 

I ' tj2 

/ \ 







/ \ 



The hypothesis of successive-cyclic movement accounts for the ap- 
parently problematic case where VP-external subject of an ordinary 

Kim: VP-intemal subject hypothesis and ATB gap paralleUsm 329 

past sentence can be ATB-extracted with a VP-internal argument of 
a RP sentence, as shown in (23). 

(23) Sino ang bumili ng tela para kay Maria na 
Who Comp AT-bought Acc-cloth for Obi-Maria and 
kakikata lang ni Juan? 

RP-meet just Gen-Juan 

'Who bought some clothes for Maria and Juan has just met?' 

In (23), the gap in the first conjunct is in Spec IP, as shown by the 
verbal morpheme urn, but the gap in the second conjunct is VP-in- 
ternal since this conjunct is RP. Given that extraction is successive 
cyclic via the empty Spec IP, ATB dependency in (23) is licensed 
between the structural subject and the intermediate trace, both of 
which are VP-external. The derivation of (23) will be like (23'). 

(23') CP 

/ \ 

whi/ j C ' 

/ \ 

/ \ 


/ \ / \ 

I' ti I' tj2 

/ \ / \ 


/_\ /_\ 

The difference between (21b) and (23) is that in the former. Topic 
position is occupied by the structural subject, while it is not in the 
latter. And so, successive-cyclic extraction occurs only in (23). 

In summary, the ATB extraction patterns in Tagalog support my 
generalization of the VP-internal vs. VP-external distinction. 

One implication of my hypothesis is that in the V-initial lan- 
guages where both the subject and the object are VP-internal, ATB 
extraction of the subject and the object will be well-formed. 

6. Alternative approaches: Woolford (1987) 

Woolford (1987) provides an ECP-theoretic account of the ATB 
dependencies in English in (1), following Chomsky's (1986) Barrier 
system. Woolford's analysis is based on the assumption that since 
neither conjunct IP in the sentences in (1) is L-marked, the IP im- 
mediately dominating the conjunct IPs is a barrier by inheritance, 
given that a coordinate structure is a multiply headed flat structure 
like (24). That is, according to her analysis, IP2 and IP3 are not L- 
marked, hence IPl is a barrier for government. 

(24) IPl 

/ \ 
IP2 IP3 

330 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

Under her view, (le) and (if), which are schematically represented 
as in (25), are ruled out by the ECP. 

(25) a (=le)...[cp who, [ip[ip [vp V tj ]] and [ip tj VP]]] 

b (=lf)...[cp whoi [ip[ip...[vp ti' [vp V [,p ti r ]]]] and [ip t, VP]]] 

Here, the object gap is theta-governed by the verb, satisfying the 
ECP. However, the subject gap is not properly governed, since it is 
neither theta-governed by the verb nor antecedent-governed by the 
wh-phrase in Spec CP because of the intervening barrier: the topmost 
IP. Therefore, (le) and (If) are ruled out by the ECP. 

On the other hand, (la) satisfies the ECP, if it is considered an 
instance of VP coordination rather than IP coordination: The gap is 
antecedent-governed by the wh-phrase in Spec CP. (lb) satisfies the 
ECP: Object gaps are theta-governed by its head verb. (Ic) and (Id) 
are consistent with the ECP, since object gaps are lexically governed, 
while the gaps of the embedded subjects are antecedent-governed 
by the VP-adjoined intermediate traces, which is later deleted (Las- 
nik & Saito 1984, 1992). Therefore, ATB gap parallelism in English is 
reduced to the ECP in this analysis. 

However, Woolford's Barrier-type analysis raises theory-inter- 
nal problems. In Chomsky 1986, where a segment of a category is 
not a barrier, the topmost IP (i.e. IPl in (24)) cannot be a barrier 
because it is not a category but a segment of a category. Then the 
Barrier-type analysis does not actually rule out (le) and (If). 

Furthermore, Woolford's analysis cannot predict the variation 
observed in this paper. 

7. Conclusion 

I have so far argued that ATB dependencies are structurally de- 
termined. The generalization for which I have argued is that ATB de- 
pendencies are consistent with VP-internal vs. VP-external positions. 
My generalization correctly accounts for ATB dependencies in English 
and Korean and the difference between the two languages. Further- 
more, the generalization can be derived in a principled way from the 

My analysis strongly supports the VP-internal subject hypoth- 
esis. One remaining question is how far my analysis reaches cross- 
linguistically, which I leave for future research. 


*Thanks to James Yoon and A. Benmamoun for insightful com- 
ments and criticism. 

• In this paper, Topicalization is considered as involving move- 
ment. Evidence for the movement hypothesis is: First, Topic construc- 
tion obeys the subjacency condition, as shown in (i). 

Kim: VP-intemal subject hypothesis and ATB gap parallelism 331 

(i) ?*ku pyengj-un Mary-ka [ tj tj kkay-n salanii-ul] 

the bottle-Top M-Nom break-Mod person-Acc 

'As for the bottle, Mary accused the person who broke t.' 

Secondly, the Topic construction does not allow resumptive pronouns, 
as shown in (ii), where the pronoun kunye cannot be bound by the 
Topic phrase Mary. 

(ii) *Maryi-nun John-i kunycj-lul salangha-n-ta. 
M-Top J-Nom her-Acc love-Pres-Dec 

'As for Mary, John loves her.' 

2 In Chomsky's (1993, 1994) minimalist framework, nominative 
case is 'checked off by the functional head T(ense) and the subject 
agreement features by AgrS via Spec-Head agreement in the course 
of derivation in overt syntax. Whatever the case checking position 
may be is of no importance in this paper. What is important is that 
the subject raises in the overt syntax from the VP-internal position 
to a VP-external position for case (and agreement) reasons. Just for 
ease of exposition, I follow the standard assumption a la Chomsky 
(1981, 1986). However, my argument is valid in the minimalist 
framework as well. 

3 This is what is assumed in Chomsky (1993,1994). 

^ If we adopt Chomsky 1993, 1994, the distinction between En- 
glish and Korean may be that in English, the subject has strong fea- 
tures to be checked off in overt syntax, while in Korean the subject 
has weak features to be checked off in covert syntax (This hypothe- 
sis seems reasonable if we consider the facts about nominative case 
marking discussed above). This difference leads to the same conclu- 
sion that the subject position in English is VP-external, while that in 
Korean is VP-internal. If this is correct, nominative case in Korean 
will be satisfied by covert movement. 

A consequence of the hypothesis that subject raises covertly is 
that it accounts for scope facts of quantifier subjects, as in (i). 

(i) ta o-ci ani ha-ess-ta. (J-H. Suh 1990) 

all come-C neg do-Pst-Dec 

(i) is ambiguous, depending on scope relation between the quantifier 
subject ta (all) and negation: One reading is the case where the quan- 
tifier ta takes scope over negation, which means No one came. The 
other is the case where negation takes scope over the quantifier, 
which means Not all came. If subject is covertly raised at LP, wide 
scope interpretation of the quantifier can be correctly explained. 
Narrow scope interpretation of the quantifier follows from the VP- 
internal position. 

5 I thank A. Yambao (p.c) for Tagalog data used in this paper. 

332 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 


Belleti, a., & L. Rizzi. 1988. Psych-verbs and theta-theory. Natural 
Language and Linguistic Theory 6:291-352. 

Burton, S., & J. Grimshaw. 1992. Coordination and VP-internal sub- 
jects. Linguistic Inquiry 23:305-312. 

Chomsky, N. 1977. On WH-movement. Formal syntax, ed. by P. Culi- 
cover, T. Wasow, & A. Akmajian. New York: Academic Press. 

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. 1993. A minimalist program for linguistic theory. The view 

from building 20, ed. by K. Hale & S. J. Keyser. Cambridge, MA: 
MIT Press. 

. 1994. Bare phrase structure. MIT occasional papers in lin- 
guistics 5. 

Cinque, G. 1990. Types of A'-dependencies. Cambridge, MA: MIT 

DYLA, S. 1984. Across-the-board dependencies and Case in Polish. 
Linguistic Inquiry 15:701-705. 

Franks, S. 1993. On parallelism in across-the-board dependencies. 
Linguistic Inquiry 24:509-529. 

GazDAR, G. 1981. Unbounded dependencies and coordinate structure. 
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GUILFOYLE, E., H. Hung, & L. Travis. 1992. SPEC of IP and SPEC of VP: 
Two subjects in Austronesian languages. Natural Languages and 
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Kroeger, p. 1993. Phrase structure and grammatical relations in 
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Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 

Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Martina Lindseth 
Indiana University 

Phenomena exist in Czech and Serbian which appear to 
pose problems for standard views of null subject properties. 
First, in a licensing/identification system for null subjects, 
the optional occurrence of overt non-referential pronouns 
in canonical NS-languages is unexpected since a language 
which allows null thematic subjects should not contain lexi- 
cal expletives, in keeping with the Avoid Pronoun Principle. 
However, while overt expletives do frequently occur in 
Colloquial Czech and Sorbian dialects, this does not neces- 
sarily contradict theoretical predictions about possible lan- 
guage types. Second, the loss of null subject properties in 
some Sorbian dialects may reflect German influence on 
sentence structure. 

0. Introduction 

Slavic languages are surprisingly diverse from the perspective 
of 'null subject' phenomena. Some lexicalize referential subject pro- 
nouns while others do not. Moreover — and of central interest for this 
paper — some appear to have overt expletive subjects despite being 
otherwise null subject languages, although their properties show 
cross-linguistic variation. Most notable in this context are phenomena 
in colloquial Czech and Upper sorbian dialects which apparently pose 
serious problems for an identification/licensing approach to null 
subjects. This paper, after providing some general background, will 
analyze the status of overt expletives in Czech and Upper Sorbian as 
canonical null subject (NS) languages and discuss some implications 
for syntactic theory. I then go on to deal with the expression of the- 
matic pronominal subjects in Sorbian dialects and provide some 
possible explanations. 

1. Identification and licensing 

In a canonical non-NS language, such as English, both theta- 
marked and expletive subjects must be lexically filled, as illustrated 
in (1). 

(1) a. I/*e am reading a book 
b. it/*e is getting dark 

In a canonical NS language, on the other hand, both theta-marked 
and expletive subjects remain phonologically null, as illustrated in 

334 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

the Serbo-Croatian example in (2). 

(2) a. e Citam knjigu '(I) am reading' [S-C] 

b. e smrkava '(it) is getting dark' 

A theta-marked subject pronoun, as in (2'), will be lexically realized 
only if it receives special emphasis. 

(2') ja eitam knjigu 'I (and not she) am reading the book' 

Traditionally it has been assumed that the availability of null 
subject pro somehow depends on 'richness' of subject-verb agree- 
ment. 2 However, the existence of languages which exhibit 'mixed be- 
havior' with respect to the lexicalization of pronominal subjects re- 
veals that there is no monolithic 'null subject parameter'. Russian, for 
instance, expresses overt referential subjects in stylistically neutral 
contexts, 3 although expletives are omitted, as shown in (3). 

(3) a. on Ijubit zivotnych [Ru] 

'he loves animals' kazetsja, Cto my zabludilis' 
'(it) seems that we are lost' 

c. pro temneet 

'(it) is getting dark' 

One might therefore argue for two distinct parametric choices that 
relate to null subject phenomena. 

There have been specific proposals in the literature for two dif- 
ferent kinds of morphological richness. A number of researchers, in- 
cluding Rizzi, Jaeggli and Safir, distinguish licensing and identification 
of null pronouns. Licensing is a purely formal criterion, something 
that all empty categories are subject to. Identification is a more sub- 
stantive criterion, since it refers to the availability of some mecha- 
nism for recovering the essential grammatical information left 

One standard approach to the problem of 'mixed languages' is to 
capitalize on the distinction between licensing and identifying condi- 
tions for null subjects. The licensing conditions specify the environ- 
ment in which null subjects are allowed to occur. ALL null subjects, 
independent of their thematic status, must be formally licensed. 
However ONLY referential null subjects require additional identifica- 
tion to ensure unambiguous 'recoverability' of their pronominal con- 
tent. Null expletives, on the other hand, merely need to be licensed. 
The distribution of null subject types in Russian can then be under- 
stood as the result of licensing but not identifying null subjects. Note 
that under a licensing/identification system the only reason for the 
occurrence of overt expletives — which by definition lack any refer- 
ential function — is that the language does not license null subjects at 
all, as in English. This type of system predicts the THREE different 
languages types in (4). 

(4) a. canonical null-subject languages (Italian, Serbo-Croatian) 


Lindseth: Overt expletives and thematic subjects in West Slavic 335 

b. canonical overt-subject languages (English) 

c. mixed type: overt referential pronouns; null expletives 

It makes no sense to talk about identification without licensing 
since if null subjects in some language were identified without being 
licensing they still could not exist. The practical impossibility of 
identification without licensing allows for just one type of 'mixed' 
null subject language, as in (4c). The essence of the licens- 
ing/identification dichotomy is that it is much 'easier' for expletives 
than for referential pronouns to be null, since their pronominal con- 
tent does not need to be identified. Identification can perhaps be 
understood as 'more complete' licensing. 

2. Overt Expletives in West Slavic: Czech and Serbian 

All West Slavic literary languages omit unstressed pronominal 
subjects, and thus qualify as canonical null subject languages. The 
colloquial languages, however, pose some interesting problems for 
the licensing/identification system. 

2.1. Colloquial Czech 

For example, overt expletive subjects seem to appear in Czech in 


(5) a. one je chladno b. one prsi c. one se blyska 

'it is cold' 'it's raining' 'it's lightning' 

(6) a. one se tam nepracuje b. one se tu tancuje. 

i t/refl./t he re/neg.- works it/re fl. /the re/dances 

'no work is being done there' 'dancing is going on there' 
(cf. Es wird nicht gearbeitet) (cf. Es wird getanzt) [Germ] 

(7) a. one je mozno, ze ... b. one je prece nutno, abychom ... 

'it is possible that ...' 'it is after all necessary that I ...' 

First of all, these expletives are OPTIONALLY overt so that Colloquial 
Czech is not per se a counterexample to the three possible language 
types in (4).^ Nevertheless, such constructions should be impossible, 
since if a language docs not REQUIRE thematic subjects to be lexical- 
ized, then it cannot ALLOW expletive subjects to be lexicalized. Such a 
combination would conflict with Chomsky's (1981:65) Avoid Pronoun 
Principle, stated in (8): 

(8) Avoid lexical pronominal if a null pronominal is possible. 

Overt subject pronouns in a NS-language are only used for em- 
phasis or to signal a change in topic. The use of overt subject pro- 
nouns in a NS-language is thus determined by 'functional' consid- 
erations. However, it is standardly assumed that expletive subjects 
by definition are void of any semantic content and therefore cannot 
signal emphasis or contrastive stress. Being 'functionally' useless 
they can, and by the Avoid Pronoun Principle must, always be 
avoided in a NS-language. 5 

336 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1 994) 

The most immediate question is of course whether these exple- 
tives are really subjects. Assuming Spec-IP as the structural subject 
position, I claim that these are indeed in that position (or at least not 
in Spec-CP). This conclusion is based on ono's compatibility with 
overt material in C, such as the complementizer protoze in (9a, b) and 
the finite verb nepracovalo in the yes-no question in (9c). 

(9) a. nemuzu jit ven, protoze one tam pr§i 

'(I) can't go outside, because it is raining there' 

b. ...protoze one se nepracuje v nedSli 

... be c au se/e X pi. /refl./neg.- works/on/Sunday 
'because there is no work being done on Sunday' 

c. ?nepracovalo se ono vCera 

ne g - worked/re fl./expl. /yesterday 
'wasn't there any work done yesterday?' 

Moreover, expletive ono 'subjects' in Czech can co-occur with 
referential NP subjects, as shown in (10). 

(10) a. ona ta mySIenka ma nSco do sebe 

'e\p\.fg^ this thoughtjp^ has something to it' 

b. ono se ti to Ihani jednou vymsti 

'expl.„^„, this lying„^„, will come back to haunt you sometime' 

c. oni si Polaci volili krale 
'expl.p/„^ the Poles„/„^ elected a king' 

d. ona se tu naskytfa ta vosoba 
'expl.y^^ that persony^„, appeared there' 

e. on mu otec viechno dovoli 
'^^P^-masc father^,„,. allows 1 

f. ono tam bylo moc lidig^,,^/ 
'expl.„^„f many people^^,, p/ were there ' 

In most modern dialects, the expletive in such constructions has to 
agree with the associated referential subject in pronominal features. 
We thus have feminine ona in (10a), neuter ono in (10b) and mascu- 
line on in (lOe), etc.^ These expletives appear in the Nominative case. 
Moreover, expletives in constructions of this type are also compatible 
with material in C or Spec-CP, as shown in (11). 

(11) a. najednou ona se tu naskytla ta vosoba 

'suddenly that person appeared there' 

b. myslim, ze ona ta tvoje myslenka ma ndco do sebe 
'I think, that your thought has something to it' 

c. pro<5 ona se Mafenka stara o v§echno 
'why is M. taking care of everything' 

d. ...protoze ono se ti to Ihani jednou vymsti 

'because this lying will come back to haunt you sometime' 

Based on these facts I conclude that the expletive is in Spec-IP. 
However, according to the VP-internal subject hypothesis there is 
another subject position, namely Spec-VP which is assumed to be the 
D-structure position for all thematic subjects. I propose that the ref- 


Lindseth: Overt expletives and thematic subjects in West Slavic 


erential subject NP in the examples under (10) and (II) actually re- 
mains in Spec-VP at S-structure. This is illustrated in (12). At LF the 
referential NP moves up to Spec-IP to adjoin to (or replace) the ex- 
pletive so that no violation of the Principle of Full Interpretation 



The structure in (12) raises the question of how the NP in Spec- 
VP is assigned Nominative case. This could be achieved, in keeping 
with the Split INFL hypothesis, by projection of a separate Agree- 
ment phrase AgrP and Tense phrase TP, as in (12') below, under the 
assumption that either Agr or T can assign Nominative case as a mat- 
ter of parametric choice (cf. Roberts 1993:27). According to Roberts, 
Agr can assign case under spec-head agreement or government ECM; 
T however can only assign case under government ECM. Therefore, 
Tense in some languages, including under this analysis Czech, assigns 
Nominative case under government of the subject NP in Spec-VP. For 
Colloquial Czech, I suggest that Agr is also able at the same time to 
assign Nominative to its specifier, occupied by the expletive, under 
spec-head agreement. 

Another similar phenomenon is illustrated in (13). The distri- 
butional facts given in (14) demonstrate that the expletive in con- 
structions of this type is also compatible with overt material in C, 
such as the complementizer ze in (14a) or the finite verb neni in the 
yes-no question in (14b). 

338 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

(13) a. on je to nSkdy problem (Koenitz 1988:10) 

'it is sometimes a problem' 

b. ona je to hodna holka (Hirschova 1984:273) 

'this is a nice girl' 

c. oni jsou to zajimavi lide (zajimavy lidi) (ibid) 

'these are interesting people' 

d. ono je to t6ik e 
'that is difficult' 

(14) a. pro(5 mysliS, ze ona je to hodna holka 

'why do you think that this girl is nice' 
b. neni on to hodny Clov^k 

'isn't that a nice guy!!' 

I take the complement of copular 'be' to be a Small Clause, fol- 
lowing proposals by Stowell (1978) and Safir (1985). Assuming a 
Small Clause structure for copula sentences, the analysis might then 
essentially be the following: the expletive is in Spec-AgrP of the ma- 
trix clause and agrees in pronominal features with the predicative NP 
of the Small Clause, while to ('this') is the subject of the Small Clause. 
This is illustrated in (15a). The ungrammaticality of (15b) further 
supports the idea that to is indeed the subject of the Small Clause, 
and not some sort of adverbial. 

(15) a. [AGRpexpl.[AGRAGR[TpT[sctoXP]]]] 
b. *Mafenka je to hodna holka. 

M. /is/this/nice/girl 

2.2. Origin and meaning of Czech expletives 

The Czech expletive is used for emotive emphasis. It always 
implies some sort of emotion from the point of view of the speaker, 
such as surprise, joy or disappointment. I therefore reject Hyams' 
(1986) position that non-referential elements (i.e. expletives) cannot 
occur in emphatic contexts. Instead, I claim that overt expletives in 
Czech should be subsumed under the generally possible occurrence 
of overt subject pronouns in marked discourse. One might therefore 
interpret the expletive in Spec-AgrP as an overt realization of the 
pronominal features of Agr to specially MARK the context as em- 

Expletives by definition lack any referential properties. How is it 
then possible that such an element can carry an emphatic reading? 
The use of expletive pronouns in Czech for emotive emphasis has an 
interesting history. As pointed out by TravniCek (1962), this emotive 
meaning developed out of the interjection ano/ono, the original 
translation of Latin ecce, which had sentential value on its own and 
was therefore positioned 'outside' the CP of the following clause The 

Lindseth: Overt expletives and thematic subjects in West Slavic 339 

Old Czech example in (16) is an illustration of this. The later devel- 
opment of the various emotional nuances of this element was accom- 
panied by the loss of its sentential value and incorporation into the 
sentence structure proper. According to TravniCek, agreeing forms, 
which may reflect this 'movement down the tree', developed as early 
as the 16th century, as illustrated by (17). 

(16)ono, kliC V zamce zkrechta (Travnicek 1962:18) 

'Lo, the key clanked in the door' 

( 17) oni vi^ichni Certi vySli su z pekla pro tu duSi (ibid:25) 
'expl.p/ all devils^/ came out of hell for these souls' 

2.3. 'Expletive subjects' in Upper Serbian 

Literary Upper Sorbian is a null-subject language as illustrated 
in the short excerpt in (18) taken from a novel by Jurij Koch (1991). 

(18) Moja macerna rec je serb§cina .. Z tutej rdcu e sym wotrostl. e 
njemozu so wjace wot njeje dzelic, tSz nic, hdyz e bych to chyL e 
njejsym sej ju wupytal. e b6 tu hizo, hdyz e dondzech.' 

'My mother tongue is Sorbian. With this language (I) grew up. 
(I) can't separate myself from it, even if (I) wanted to. (I) didn't 
chose it. (It) was already there when (I) arrived. 

However, the examples under (19) show that Upper Sorbian dialects 
have overt elements that look very much like expletive subjects.'' 
Depending on the dialect zone, one finds wono, wane or won. Inter- 
estingly, and in contrast to Czech, no emotive component is associated 
with the use of these expletives. 

( 19) a. wone/won hrima 

'it is thundering' 

b. wone/won b6 wfitrokojte 
'it was windy' 

c. wone/won so deScuje 
'it is raining' 

d. wone/won taje 
'it is thawing' 

e. wone lei je tak potom, zo .... 
'it is then also so, that 

Judging from my initial field work in Lusatia. there seems to be 
a syntactic incompatibility between expletives and w/i-phrases or 
complementizers, as shown in examples (20) and (21). Although in 
Czech as well, some speakers find the co-occurrence of expletives 
with material in C and Spec-CP awkward, such incompatibilities can 
be attributed to pragmatic rather than syntactic considerations, since 
the use of overt expletives is reserved for emotive contexts in Czech. 
No such explanation is available for Upper Sorbian, which leads me to 
conclude that these expletives are actually in Spec-CP, perhaps under 
the influence of German non-argumental es in V2 contexts. For one 
thing, wone is incompatible with a u/i-word, as shown in (20). 


340 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1 994) 

(20) hdyz (*wone) taje, nejmozemy so smykac 
'when it thaws, we can't skate' 

As in German constructions without external argument, the expletive 
wane similarly cannot follow a complementizer such as dokelz 
'because', but it can follow a conjunction such as ale 'but', which is in 
a position 'outside' CP.^ This is illustrated in (21). j^ 

(21) a. nejn'du won, dokelz so (*wone) de§cuje ^' 

'I don't go outside because it is raining' 
b. ja bych chcyla won hie, ale wone so de§cuje 
'I would like to go outside, but it is raining' 

A curious type of construction was discovered in a dialect text 
from the MjeSic region, cited by FaBke & Michalk (1989:41) Example 

(22) is an arbitrary third plural construction with a third person sin- 
gular expletive in initial position. This indirectly supports my hy- 
pothesis that the overt expletive in Upper Sorbian is not in Spec- 
AgrP, since otherwise we would be faced with a very unusual sit- 
uation of non-agreement between the singular pronominal subject 
won and the plural verb su pojdali. 

(22) won su jow wele pojdali, zo... 

'One used to say here often, that...' 

2.4 Summary 

In Czech, expletives are indeed in the structural subject position 
of Spec-AgrP. However, they are invariably associated with an em- 
phatic reading so that they should be subsumed under the generally 
possible occurrence of overt subject pronouns in marked discourse, 
thereby disproving the standard assumption that expletives cannot 
be emphatic and can therefore never be overt in NS languages. By 
the Avoid Pronoun Principle, a language that licenses null subjects 
will never use overt expletives unless they convey some special 
emotive meaning. I therefore speculate that Colloquial Czech is sim- 
ply special in having such emphatic expletives. Moreover, since the 
subject NP may remain in Spec-VP, Spec-AgrP is freed up for 
agreeing expletives in subject doubling constructions. 

In Sorbian, the syntactic incompatibility of expletives with wh- 
phrases and complementizers indicates that the expletive is not a . 
subject, but rather occupies Spec-CP, presumably with a pro in Spec- m 
AgrP, as is expected of a null subject language. Overt expletives in ^ 
West Slavic are therefore no real problem for the predictions of pos- 
sible language types made by the kind of identification and licensing 
system suggested by Jaeggli & Safir (1989) in conjunction with the 
Avoid Pronoun Principle. ^ 

3. Null subject properties of Sorbian dialects 

I take the properties in (23) below to be fairly reliable diag- 


Lindseth: Overt expletives and thematic subjects in West Slavic 341 

nostics of whether or not a language should be classified as "null 
subject": '0 

(23) The following properties hold true for null subject languages: 

a. Overt pronominal subjects are stylistically marked. 

b. Overt 3rd plural pronominal subjects cannot have arbitrary 

c. Overt pronouns cannot function as bound variables. 

By these criteria, although most West and South Slavic languages are 
canonical null subject languages. East Slavic languages are not. 

First, there is nothing emphatic about expressing the subject ja 
T in Russian (24a), although there is in Czech (24b) or Serbo- 
Croatian (24c). 

(24) a. ja ne ponimaju [Ru] 

'I don't understand' 

b. ja nerozumim [Cz] 

c. ja ne razumem [S-C] 

Second, in Russian the presence of overt oni 'they' in examples such 
as (25) — although prescriptively frowned upon — is still consistent 
with the arbitrary interpretation. 

(25) a. V Amerike oni govorjat po-anglijski [Ru] 

'in America they speak English' 
b. otec znaet, Cto oni syna ne primut v institut 

'father knows that they won't accept his son into the institute' 

In South and West Slavic, however, overt oni necessarily gives rise to 
the referential or specific reading. Thus, in the Serbo-Croatian exam- 
ples in (26) or the Czech ones in (27), oni must refer to specific 

(26) oni ovdje prodaju kavu [S-C] 
'they sell coffee here' 

(27) oni V tom obchodfi prodavaji kavu [Cz] 
'in this store they sell coffee' 

Third, whereas Russian (28a) can admit the bound variable reading 
despite the presence of the overt on 'he', the otherwise identical 
Serbo-Croatian (28b) and Czech (28c) cannot. 

(28)a. ka^dyj student dumaet, eto on polu^it pjatcrku [Ru] 
'every student thinks that he will get an A' 

b. svaki student misli da ce on dobiti desetku [S-C] 

c. kazdy student mysli, 2e on dostane jedniCku [Cz] 

In Serbo-Croatian and Czech, the overt on can only have a deictic in- 
terpretation. Roughly the same results obtain if the QP is replaced by 
a referential NP, as in (29a-c): 

(29) a Ivan, dumaet, c^to on, poluCit pjatcrku [Ru] 
'John thinks that he will get an A' 

342 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1 994) 

b. '•*Jovan, misli da ce on, dobiti desetku [S-C] 

c. *Jan, myslizeon, dostane jedniCku [Cz] 

Let us consider in this light some additional data from Upper 
Sorbian dialects. An examination of contemporary texts in FaBke and 
Michalk (1989) revealed a surprising level of overt subject pronoun 
use, comparable to that of Russian. Some typical examples are pro- 
vided in (30). 

(30) a. do pownoce smo mo khodzili 

'we walked until midnight' 

b. a jako dy§ je won wumrSw, dys su delka kdrlus spdwali, je 
won z woknom horka deli ladaw a fajfu kuriw 

'and when he died, when they sang a choral downstairs, he 
looked down from the window above and smoked his pipe'. 

c. tujs sej woni zane(j) rade wejdzili nejsu... 
'and since they didn't know what else to do .... 

d. ale ja sn n6k tam wele moli ribach bow a ja (ja)c jich niCo 
widziw nejsym 

'but I often used to go for mushrooms there and I didn't see 

In keeping with the null subject criterion in (23a), the frequent use 
of unemphatic pronouns strongly suggests that such a dialect does 
not qualify as a null subject language in the sense just defined.' i A 
similar conclusion can be drawn from the appearance of overt won 
'he' in the bound variable contexts in (31), following criterion (23c): 

(31) a. Feliks, njepytny, zo won, hizo hodzinu po mesce honja 

'Felix,- didn't realize that he, had already been running 
through town for an hour' 
b. ... a won, njewe, zo je won, Krabat. 

'... and he, doesn't know, that he, is Krabat' 

An example of an overt pronoun used with arbitrary reference, 
following criterion (23b), is given in (32). 

(32) pon su woni lekarja holwali 
'then they send for the doctor' 

Since Upper Sorbian has rich agreement comparable to other 
West Slavic languages, its non-NS status should perhaps be at- 
tributed to some other aspect of its syntax. An inspection of the texts 
from which these items were taken reveals a striking preponderance 
of verb-final sentences. 12 Although typologically odd from the Slavic 
perspective, this word order is typical of subordinate clauses in Ger- 
man, which are also SOV. It is possible that Upper Sorbian developed 
its preference for final position of the finite verb under the influence 
of German, especially taking into account the fact that ALL Upper 
Sorbian speakers are bilingual. For German, SOV order is often de- 
rived by analyzing AgrP as right-headed, so that when V raises to 
Agr it will end up in clause final position, as in (33). 

Lindseth: Overt expletives and thematic subjects in West Slavic 343 

(33) AgrP 

NP Agr' 


I therefore propose that the right-headedness of AgrP also accounts 
for this order in Upper Sorbian, the difference being that since Agr 
does not raise to C in Upper Sorbian, conjugated verbs are final in 
both main and embedded clauses. Notice in this light that German, 
despite its uniform realization of relatively rich agreement morphol- 
ogy, is also not a null subject language. I believe that in both lan- 
guages this fact is somehow connected with the direction of branch- 
ing of AgrP, although formalizing this correlation is beyond the scope 
of this paper.' 3 


* Preparation of this paper was made possible in part by a grant 
from the Indiana University College of Arts and Sciences. I also wish 
to thank Steven Franks and Barbara Vance for their helpful com- 

' Upper Sorbian is a West Slavic language spoken by about 
50,000 people in and around the city of Bautzen in former East 
Germany. The language is also called Upper Lusatian. For a linguis- 
tically sophisticated and readily accessible discussion of Sorbian the 
reader is referred to Stone (1993). 

2 In this paper I shall not be concerned with the obvious empiri- 
cal problem of languages like Japanese or Chinese which seem to 
have null subjects but lack agreement entirely. According to Jaeggli 
& Safir (1989), null subjects occur in the context of either very rich 
agreement or no agreement at all. Speas (1994) attempts to provide 
an explanation for this previously unexplained fact about null sub- 
jects in terms of how general principles of economy constrain the 
projection of an AGR phrase. 

3 Russian (as representative of East Slavic) is different from 
South and West Slavic languages in that overt thematic pronominal 
subjects are used in unmarked discourse. It has often been argued 
(Miiller 1989; Kosta 1990) that Russian is a Null-subject language 
like Czech or Serbo-Croatian. One probable reason for this is the wide 
range of examples with missing subjects which can be found in 
Colloquial Russian. However, it seems that the 'loss' of thematic sub- 
ject pronouns in Russian is part of a larger phenomenon, namely the 
tendency toward ellipsis of recoverable lexical material. (For an 
analysis of Russian as differing from classic Null-subject languages cf. 
Franks 1990, Lindseth & Franks 1994, as well as section 3 of this 


344 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 


'* Holmberg & Nikanne (1994) discuss Finnish as an apparent 
counterexample for this generalization. Finnish allows null referential 
pronouns, but requires an overt expletive in certain impersonal 

5 Compare also Hyams' (1986) account, according to which /| 
(re)setting of the pro-drop parameter depends crucially on the child V > 
taking note of expletive subjects in a language. Overt expletives indi- 
cate that all subjects are obligatorily lexicalized. 

6 Comparable constructions seem to have existed in Old Serbian 
manuscripts, as illustrated in (i). One such text is Swgtlik's bible 
translation of 1704, examples of which are cited in Michalk 
(1972:92-93). Moreover, colloquial Finnish possibly allows for a sim- 
ilar construction, as mentioned by Holmberg & Nikanne (1994:fn.3), 
given here as (ii) 

(i) ...ha wona so sta jena wulka cichota 

and/Qxp\.fem /refl./came-about/great/e^/silence/e,„ 
(ii) ne ovat nama lapset varmaan jo oppineet lukemaan. 
expl.p/„r/h a ve/these/childrenp/„;-/su rely/already/ 

'7 Parts of this data were presented at the annual conference of 
the American Association of Teachers of Slavic and Eastern European 
Languages (AATSEEL) 1992 at New York (with Jonathan Ludwig). See 
also Schuster-Sewc (1974) for discussion. The same phenomenon can 
apparently be found in Lower Sorbian as well. 

(i) wono se pada 'it is raining' 

(ii) wono se Scerka, az... 'it is secretly being said, that...' 

8 Compare German [cpweil *es [ippro getanzt wird ]] ('because 
there is dancing going on') with [aber [cp^s wurde [pro getanzt 
]]]('but there was dancing going on'). An additional complication in 
comparing the distribution of expletives in German and Sorbian is 
the fact that in German only NON-ARGUMENTAL subjects (as in the im- 
personal construction above) are pro, while QUASI-ARGUMENTAL sub- 
jects, such as subjects of weather verbs, always have to be overt. 

9 The table below is an alternative description of possible and 
impossible language types. I take '-I-' to mean obligatorily overt, '±' 
optionally overt. 'T' stands for 'thematic subjects', 'E' for expletive 

[-hT,+E] English 

[-i-T,-E] Russian, German 

[±T, -E] Italian 

*[±T, +E] Identification without licensing is impossible 

[±T, ±E] Ruled out by Avoid Pronoun principle unless language 

has emphatic expletives ; Colloquial Czech 
[+T, ±E] Ruled out by Avoid Pronoun Principle unless language 

has emphatic expletives; so far not attested 

Lindseth: Overt expletives and thematic subjects in West Slavic 345 

'0 For a more complete discussion of Null subject diagnostics see 
also Lindseth & Franks 1994. 

" According to Stone (1993:668-669) the use of overt subject 
pronouns is a general feature of Upper Sorbian dialects as opposed to 
the literary language. 

'2 The details are somewhat more complicated. Synthetic finite 
verbs appear in final position. In analytical tenses the auxiliary 
(clitic) usually stands in second position, with the participle or infini- 
tive at the end of the clause. However, when the auxiliary is negated 
it too appears in final position. See Stone (1993:652-956), JenC 
(1959:3-47), and Michalk (1956-57:3-41) for more examples and 

' "* On the other hand, it should be mentioned that these Upper 
Sorbian dialects do not disallow null subjects. Instead null and overt 
pronouns seem to occur basically in free variation. Perhaps Sorbian 
personal pronouns lost the emphatic meaning which is typical for 
Null-subject languages under the influence of German atonic pro- 
nouns. Under such an account it is possible that null subjects in 
Upper Sorbian are in fact licensed and identified, but the diagnostics 
under (23) fail due to the non-emphatic character of overt pronouns. 
As a result these dialects appear to be truly optional Null-subject in 
the sense that no functional considerations seem to determine the 
choice of overt vs. covert subject pronouns. 


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Roberts, Ian. 1993. Verbs and diachronic syntax. Dordrecht: Kluwer. 

Safir, Kenneth. 1985. Syntactic chains. Cambridge: Cambridge Uni- 
versity Press. 

Speas, Margaret. 1994. Null arguments in a theory of economy of 
projection. University of Massachusetts Occasional Papers in Lin- 
guistics 17.179-208. 

Stone, Gerald. 1993. Sorbian. The Slavonic languages, ed. by Bernhard 
Comrie & Greville Corbett, 593-685. London: Routledge. 

Stowell, Timothy. 1978. What was there before there was there. Pro- 
ceedings of CLS 14.458-471. 

SCHUSTER-SEWC, H. 1974. Satze mit fiktivem Subjekt vom Typ os. 
'Wono so deScuje/ ns. to se pada' und ihre Stellung in der 
slawischen Syntax. Zeitschrift fiir Slawistik 19.340-352. 

TRAVNICEK, FrantiSek. 1962. Historicka mluvnice Ceska III, Skladba. 
Praha: SPN. 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Jairo Nunes 

University of Maryland 

It has been claimed in the literature that Lithuanian 
differs from other languages in allowing impersonal pas- 
sives of unaccusative, raising and passivized verbs. In this 
paper I propose another analysis for these constructions. 
Based on the fact that '/^y-phrases' of standard passives are 
morphologically identical to NPs marked with possessive 
genitive Case, I propose that the head of participial TP in 
Lithuanian is a nominal element which is able to assign 
genitive Case to its Specifier. The alleged impersonal pas- 
sives in Lithuanian are then analyzed as simple instances of 
raising a Caseless NP to the Specifier of the participial TP. 

1. Introduction 

Lithuanian has been receiving considerable attention in the lit- 
erature (see Timberlake 1982, Nerbonne 1982, Keenan & Timberlake 
1985, Postal 1986, Baker, Johnson & Roberts 1989, among others) 
because it apparently allows not only impersonal passives of unerga- 
tive verbs, as in languages such as German, but also impersonal pas- 
sives of unaccusative, raising and even passive verbs. Lithuanian 
thus seems to be an exception to the generally accepted general- 
ization that passive morphology somehow withholds the 9-role that 
would otherwise be assigned to the subject of an active sentence (see 
Chomsky 1981, Jaeggli 1986, Roberts 1987, and Baker, Johnson & 
Roberts 1989, among others). 

Within the framework of Relational Grammar, such a general- 
ization follows from the 1 -Advancement Exclusiveness Law (lAEX 
Law), which requires that only one argument acquire subject status 
in the derivation of a given clause (see Perlmutter 1978, Perlmutter 
& Postal 1984). Within the Principles and Parameters Theory, Baker, 
Johnson & Roberts (1989) have proposed that this generalization 
follows from the fact that the D-structure representation of a passive 
clause has the general format as in (1) on the next page, where the 
passive morpheme -en is an argument base-generated under Infl. 

As an argument generated in Infl, the passive morpheme should 
be assigned the external e-role in the sense of Williams 1981 and, 
therefore, cannot appear with verbs that do not assign such a 9-role, 
such as unaccusative, raising, and passive verbs, as exemplified in 
(2a-c) respectively (Baker, Johnson & Roberts's (39)): 

348 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2(1 994) 

(1) IP 

NP r 
I /\ 

e I VP 



I /\ 

be I VP 

I /\ 

-en V NP 

(2) a. *It is grown very fast (by children) in this orphanage. 

b. *It was seemed to have left (by John). 

c. *It was been broken (by the vase) by John. 

In order to account for the Lithuanian constructions such as (3)- 
(5) below,! which are claimed to be analogous to those of (2), Baker, 
Johnson & Roberts (1989:232) propose that the Lithuanian passive 
morpheme is not an Infl head, but rather a noun that cliticizes to 
Infl. On such a proposal, 'the Lithuanian passive morpheme can ap- 
pear in any NP position generated by the base', yielding possible 
derivations for (3)-(5). 

(3) Kur mus gimta, kur augta? 

where by-us bear (PASS.NT.SG.) where grow (PASS. NT. SG.) 
'Where were we born, where did we grow up?' 
(lit. 'where by us was getting born, where getting grown up?') 
(Timberlake 1982) 

(4) Jo pasirodyta esant didvyrio. 
him (GEN.) seem (PASS.NT.SG.) being hero 

'By him it was seemed to be a hero'. 
(Keenan & Timberlake 1985) 

(5) To lapelio buta vejo nupusto. 

that leaf (GEN.) be (PASS.NT.SG.) wind (GEN.) blow (PASS.NT.SG.) 
'By that leaf there was being blown down by the wind'. 
(Timberlake 1982) 

In this paper, I argue within the framework of the Principles 
and Parameters Theory that Lithuanian constructions such as (3)-(5) 
have been misanalyzed. Rather than being impersonal passives of 
unaccusative, raising and passive verbs, I propose that these con- 
structions be treated analogously to the possessive -ing constructions 
in English illustrated in (6) below (see Abney 1987, Milsark 1988, 
and references therein). In particular, I propose that the head of the 
participial TP in Lithuanian is a nominal element that assigns gen- 
itive Case to its specifier in the same way possessive -ing in English 

(6) a. [ John's arriving late ] annoyed everyone. 

Nunes: Another look at Lithuanian impersonal passives 349 

b. [ John's appearing to have behaved like a hero ] was 
mentioned in the meeting. 

c. [ John's being arrested by the police ] was the gossip of 
the day. 

The paper is organized as follows. In section 2 I present some 
properties of the participial T head in Lithuanian. In section 3 I lay 
out my proposal concerning participle constructions in Lithuanian, 
showing in section 4 how the so called impersonal passives can be 
analyzed under such a proposal. In section 5, I discuss the pattern of 
participial agreement in Lithuanian impersonal passives. Finally, I 
present some comparison between Lithuanian participles and English 
possessive -ing in section 6. 

2. Characterizing Lithuanian participle morphemes 

2.1 Lithuanian participle morphemes as heads of TP 

As mentioned in section 1, Baker, Johnson & Roberts (1989) ar- 
gue that the passive morpheme -en in English is generated in Infl (cf. 
(1)). This provides a simple account for the fact that a passive verb 
in English cannot take the past tense suffix -ed, as shown in (7) be- 
low. If the passive morpheme -en is generated in Infl, it is expected 
to be in complementary distribution with the other tense morphemes 
that are generated in Infl. 

(7) *John seened/sawen by everyone. 
'John was seen by everyone'. 

By the same reasoning, were the Lithuanian passive morpheme 
generated in any noun position as proposed by Baker, Johnson & 
Roberts, we should expect constructions analogous to (7) to be well- 
formed in Lithuanian. Infl in a passive construction should be al- 
lowed to have tense morphemes, because the passive morpheme 
would not be generated under this node. 

This expectation is not met, however. In Lithuanian, the past 
passive participle is formed by removing the infinitival ending -// 
and adding -tas (nom., masc, sg.) or -ta (nom., fem., sg.). In turn, the 
present passive participle is formed by adding the endings -mas 
(nom., masc, sg.) or -ma (nom., fem., sg.) to the 3rd person present 
tense form of verb, which is composed of the stem and a vowel 
specifying conjugation (see Dambriunas, Klimas, & Schmalstieg 1966). 
In both present and past participle constructions, the passive verb 
carries no tense morpheme other than the passive morpheme itself. 
Finite tense inflection in these constructions is carried by the copular 
verb buti ('to be'), which may be omitted in the present tense, as 
exemplified in (8) (see Dambriunas, Klimas, & Schmalstieg 1966): 

(8) Ji (yra) giria-m-a. 

she (NOM.) be (3 PRS.) praise-PPLE.-NOM.FEM.SG. 
'She is being praised'. 

350 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

The similarities in distribution between the passive participle 
morphemes in Lithuanian and the passive morpheme in English sug- 
gest that they are generated in the same position. I thus propose that 
the Lithuanian participle morphemes are also associated with a pro- 
jection of Infl. I take the structure of Lithuanian participial clauses to 
be essentially the same as the one proposed by Baker, Johnson & 
Roberts in (1) for English passives, only updating it in terms of the 
'Split Infl Hypothesis' (see Pollock 1989, Belletti 1990, Chomsky 

I propose that the present participle -m- and the past participle 
-t- head a projection of TP.2 Furthermore, I adopt Belletti's (1990) 
structure for Infl and assume that the TP headed by a participle affix 
is dominated by an agreement projection (AgrsP), postponing the 
discussion of the existence of an AgroP projection in participle 
clauses until section 6. 

This approach accounts for the fact that in 'double passives' such 
as (5), the two 'passive' morphemes are attached on two different 
verbs, rather than onto a single verb. Since each participle mor- 
pheme heads a projection of TP, participial forms with more than one 
participle morpheme are not possible, for the same reason that a 
participle morpheme does not cooccur with another tense morpheme. 

2.2 Lithuanian participle morphemes as nominal 

Recall that by taking the 'passive morpheme' in Lithuanian to be 
a noun. Baker, Johnson & Roberts (1989) intended to account for 
constructions in which the participle affix seems to receive a 6-role 
other than the external one. As pointed out in section 2.1., however, 
their claim that the passive morpheme can be generated in any noun 
position makes wrong predictions with respect to the distribution of 
participle affixes and other tense morphemes (for other problems 
with such an approach, see Nunes 1994b). 

Nevertheless, I keep to Baker, Johnson & Roberts's idea that the 
participle morphemes in Lithuanian are nominal elements for dif- 
ferent reasons. I follow a suggestion by Jaeggli (1986:592, fn. 6), ac- 
cording to which an element must be N-like to carry Case and a 9- 
role. Assuming that the participle affixes of standard passives in both 
English (see Baker, Johnson & Roberts 1989) and Lithuanian (see 
Nunes 1994b) are assigned the external 0-role and marked with ac- 
cusative Case, they should be nominal elements. 

Two pieces of morphological evidence in Lithuanian support this 
claim. First, the Agr head that immediately dominates the participial 
TP exhibits overtly the same ^-features (see Chomsky 1981) that 
show up in nominal phrases, namely. Case, gender and number, as 
illustrated by (9): 


Nunes: Another look at Lithuanian impersonal passives 351 

(9) Kristolinis sietynas buvo mano pirk-t-as. 
chandelier (NOM.MASC.SG.) was I (GEN.) buy-ppLE-NOMMASCSc. 
'The chandelier was bought by me'. 

(Timberlake 1982) 

The particular set of ^-features associated with the participial 
Agr head, although suggestive, cannot be taken as irrefutable evi- 
dence that the participial T head is a [-V,+N] element, for these fea- 
tures may be amenable to another interpretation. The specific gen- 
itive form of the 'i'v-phrase'^ of (9), on the other hand, provides 
unequivocal evidence. 

As pointed out by Timberlake (1982:522, fn. 2), 1st person sg., 
2nd person sg. and reflexive pronouns distinguish two genitive 
forms: one used to express possession, and the other used for com- 
plements of verbs or prepositions. Mano, for instance, is the 'pos- 
sessive' genitive form of the 1st person sg. pronoun, whereas man^s 
is the 'verbal/prepositional' genitive form, as shown in (10) below. 
As we can see in (9), it is the possessive genitive that is used to ex- 
press the agent of a passive, which means that there must be a 
nominal Case-marker in the participial clause. Under the present 
considerations, the participial T head is the best candidate as the 
source of the nominal genitive Case assigned to the 'Z?>'-phrase.' 

(10) a. Mano tevas buvo gydytojas. 

'My father was a doctor', 
b. Jis laukia manqs. 

'He is waiting for me'. 
(Dambriunas, Klimas & Schmalstieg 1966) 

3. Proposal 

It seems to me that the fact that a '/^v -phrase' in regular pas- 
sives in Lithuanian surfaces with nominal genitive Case is the main 
misleading reason for taking constructions such as (3)-(5) to be im- 
personal passives. Baker, Johnson & Roberts (1989:235) propose that 
the English passive morpheme is a syntactic clitic that can form a 
chain with a '/7v-phrase\ thus resembling clitic-doubling construc- 
tions. Judging by the literal glosses given to the sentences in (3)-(5), 
it seems that Baker, Johnson & Roberts also take the Lithuanian pas- 
sive morphemes and the '/?y-phrases' (the genitive NPs) to be in a 
kind of clitic-doubling relation. 

Something along these lines must certainly be true with respect 
to standard passives such as (9), since it is reasonable to assume that 
they behave like English passives in that their participle morpheme 
and 'fey-phrase' receive the same 9-role, forming a chain. Neverthe- 
less, it is not obvious how instances of double passives such as (11) 
are amenable to a clitic-doubling approach: 

352 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(11) Ty lapeliy bu-t-a 

those leaves (GEN.MASC.PL.) be-PPLE.-NOM.NT.SG. 

vejo nupus-t-y. 


'Those leaves were (presumably) blown down by the wind'. 

(adapted from Timberlake 1982) 

The affix of the main verb of (11) presumably cannot participate 
in two different clitic-doubling chains with both genitive NPs, be- 
cause this would violate the 9-Criterion (see Chomsky 1981). Another 
problem would arise, on the other hand, if the affix of the copular 
verb biiti ('to be') entered into a chain with either of the genitive 
NPs. Such a chain would presumably induce a 9-Criterion violation as 
well, because it would involve one of the arguments of the main verb 
and the affix of the copula, which is not an argument (as a copula, 
biiti is not a 0-assigner). 

If, by contrast, we assume that the Lithuanian participial T head 
associated with the participle morphemes is a nominal Case-assigner, 
which is independently required for regular passives such as (9), the 
only thing we have to say in order to account for the so called imper- 
sonal passives in Lithuanian is that the genitive NPs of these con- 
structions are Case-marked by the participial T head. In other words, 
it is not necessary to extend a clitic doubling analysis to every pair 
composed of a participle morpheme and a genitive Case-marked NP. 
Under this view, the common property between 'personal' and 
'impersonal' passives in Lithuanian is in terms of Case (in both types 
of construction the participial T head is a nominal Case-assigner), 
rather than in terms of 9-Theory. 

Notice also that the lack of one-to-one correspondence between 
participial morphology and passive constructions is not an idiosyn- 
cratic property of Lithuanian. In English, as in many other languages, 
such correlation does not hold either, as illustrated by the active 
sentence in (12), which employs participial morphology (for further 
discussion, see Roberts 1987, Nunes 1993, 1994c, among others): 

(12) John had seen Mary before the accident. 

In the next section we will see how the proposal that the par- 
ticipial T head in Lithuanian assigns (nominal) genitive Case allows 
us to account for the apparently unusual impersonal passives of this 
language, while assuming an updated version of the structure pro- 
posed in (1) by Baker, Johnson & Roberts (1989). 

4. 'Impersonal passives' 

4.1. Unaccusative, unergative and raising verbs 

If the participial T head in Lithuanian is a nominal Case-marker, 
alleged instances of impersonal passives of unaccusative verbs such 
as (13) can be represented as simply as in (14): 

Nunes: Another look at Lithuanian impersonal passives 353 

(13) Vaiko serga-m-a. 

child (GEN.MASC.SG.) be-sick-PPLE.-NOM.NT.SG. 
'(Evidently) the child is sick'. 
(Timberlake 1982) 

(14) AgrP 

spec Agr' 
Agr TP 

vaikoi T' 

child / \ 

serga-m-a tj 

The NP that heads the chain with the internal 9-role is generated 
in the object position of the verb, as in regular unaccusative con- 
structions, and the participle affix is associated with a participial T 
head, as in standard passives. Differently from standard passives, 
however, the participial T head in (14) is not 9-marked, since the un- 
accusative verb scroti ('to be sick') does not assign an external 0-role. 
The Caseless NP in object position then moves to the Spec of the par- 
ticipial TP, where it receives (nominal) genitive Case. 

This analysis carries over straightforwardly to 'impersonal pas- 
sives' of unergative and raising verbs such as (15) and (17) below. In 
both instances, a Caseless NP moves to the Spec of the participial TP, 
receiving genitive Case, as represented in (16) and (18) on the next 

(15) Cia zmoniq dirba-m-a. 

here people (GEN.MASC.PL.) work-PPLE.-NOM.NT.SG. 
'Here people are working'. 
(Matthews 1955) 

4.2 'Double passives' 

The apparently exotic double passive constructions in Lithuanian 
(impersonal passives of regular passives) such as (11), repeated be- 
low in (19) for convenience, receive a rather standard analysis under 
the approach pursued in this paper. These constructions are treated 
here as standard 'personal passives' like (9), the only difference be- 
ing the finiteness of the TP dominating the copula, as the simplified 
representation in (20) shows. 

354 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(16) AgrP 

spec Agr' 
Agr TP 
zmoni^i T' 

people / ^ 

( T VP 

" [■ 



(17) Jo pasirody-t-a esant didvyrio. 

he (GEN.) seem-PPLE.-NOM.NT.SG. being hero (GEN.MASC.SG.) 
'He (really) seemed to be a hero'. 
(Keenan & Timberlake 1985) 

(18) AgrP 

Spec Agr' 
Agr TP 
joi T 

he (GEN.) / \ 


pasirody-t-a IP 

seem-PPLE.-NOM.NT.SG. / \ 

tj esant didvyrio 
being hero 

(19) Ty lapeliy bu-t-a 

those leaves (GEN.MASC.PL.) be-PPLE.-NOM.NT.SG. 

vejo nupus-t-y. 


'Those leaves were (presumably) blown down by the wind'. 

(adapted from Timberlake 1982) 



Nunes: Another look at Lithuanian impersonal passives 355 

(20) AgrPi 

spec Agrf 
Agri TP, 
ty lapeliyj T/ 

those leaves ^ ^ 
( Ti VP 


bu-t-a AgrP2 
be-PPLE.-NOM.NT.SG.g / \ 

ti Agr2' 
Agr2 TP2 

vejoee T2' 

wind (GEN.MASC.SG.) / \ 

Tee VP 
nupus-t-y tj 

In (20), there is no element in the Spec of the VP headed by 
nupustn ('blown down') to bear the external 9-role. If the verb does 
not discharge such a 6-role, the derivation violates the 6-Criterion. 
The verb can however assign the external 6-role to the lower parti- 
cipial T head, which, as a nominal element, is a possible 9-role bearer 
(see section 2.2). The lower participial T head then forms a clitic- 
doubling chain with the genitive '/^y-phrase' vejo ('by the wind') in 
its Specifier (see section 3), represented in (20) by the index Qe. Once 
the participial T head is assigned a 9-role, it must be Case-marked in 
order to comply with the Visibility Condition (see Chomsky 1986). 
The main verb then raises and assigns Case to T. 

So far, this derivation does not differ from the derivation of 
standard passive constructions such as (9). The only difference be- 
tween those constructions and the one in (20) is that, rather than 
being finite as in (9), the clause containing the copula verb in (20) is 
also participial. The Caseless object then raises to Spec of the upper 
participial TP and receives genitive Case (see Nunes 1994b for a dis- 
cussion of how such a movement satisfies the Shortest Movement 
Condition of Chomsky 1993). 

5. Agreement relations 

The analysis presented above provides a straightforward ac- 
count of the paradigm of participial agreement in Lithuanian, which 
is summarized in (21) (for further discussion see Nunes 1994a): 

356 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

(21) a. In standard passives, the participial form agrees with the 
subject (the underlying object) in gender, number and Case. 

b. In 'impersonal passives', the participial verb surfaces in the 
nominative, neuter, singular form. 

c. In 'double passives', there is agreement in gender number 
participial auxiliary, which exhibits [nom., nt., sg.] mor- 

On its way to the Spec of finite Infl, where it receives nominative 
Case, the object of standard passives passes through the Spec of AgrP 
that dominates the participial TP (see the movement of the object to 
Spec of AgrP2 in (20)), triggering agreement with the participial 
form. On the other hand, the NPs that receive genitive Case in the 
Spec of the participial TP in 'impersonal passives' do not pass 
through the Spec of the participial AgrP (cf. (14), (16) and (18)). 
Thus, no agreement is triggered and the participial form surfaces 
with default agreement morphology ([nom., nt., sg.]). 

Finally, in 'double passive' constructions, both types of agree- 
ment occur. The object passes through the Spec of the lower par- 
ticipial AgrP on its way to the main clause, triggering agreement 
with the main verb. Since the object receives genitive Case in the 
Spec of the upper participial TP, the main verb surfaces in the gen- 
itive form. On the other hand, since the object does not pass through 
the upper Spec of AgrP (cf. (20)), no agreement with the participial 
auxiliary is triggered and the copula surfaces with default features. 
This derives the curious fact that in 'double passives', the subject 
agrees with the main verb 'skipping' the auxiliary verb. 

To the extent that this unusual pattern of agreement can be ex- 
plained without any additional machinery that is not already re- 
quired by an account of more familiar participle constructions, it 
provides empirical support for the analysis pursued here. 

6. Similarities and Differences with Possessive -ing 

If the above reasoning is correct, the so called impersonal pas- 
sives in Lithuanian such as (13), (15), (17) and (19) are better ana- 
lyzed as analogous to the possessive -ing constructions in English ex- 
emplified in (21) (see Abney 1987, Milsark 1988, and references 

(21) a. [ John's arriving late ] annoyed everyone. 

b. [ John's working in that place ] impressed everyone. 

c. [ John's appearing to have behaved like a hero ] was 

mentioned in the meeting. 

d. [ John's being arrested by the police ] was the gossip of 

the day. 

The participle morphemes in Lithuanian and the possessive -ing 
in English may be taken to be associated with nominal functional 
heads that are able to assign genitive Case to their Specifiers. In En- 

Nunes: Another look at Lithuanian impersonal passives 357 

glish, the Case assigned by the possessive -ing is morphologically dis- 
tinct from the Case manifested in 'Zj>'-phrases', as shown in (2 Id). 
Lithuanian participle constructions, on the other hand, do not distin- 
guish a 'standard' genitive NP from a true 'by-phrase', because both 
phrases are Case-marked by the participial T head (see section 3). 

Another difference between possessive -ing constructions in En- 
glish and Lithuanian participle constructions refers to their ability to 
license accusative objects, as illustrated in (22) and (23): 

(22) [ John's buying a house ] surprised everyone. 

(23) *Mano nupirk-t-a kristolin j_ sietyn^. 

I (GEN.) buy-PPLE.-NOM.NT.SG. chandelier (ACC.MASC.SG.) 
'(Evidently) the chandelier was bought by me'. 

If successful accusative Case assignment requires checking by an 
AgroP projection (see Chomsky & Lasnik 1993, Chomsky 1993), we 
can attribute the contrast between (22) and (23) to the existence of 
an AgroP projection in possessive -ing constructions but not in Lith- 
uanian participle constructions. This seems to be related to the fact 
that there can be no projection between the participial T head and 
the VP if T can also be assigned the external 9-role. Conversely, the 
existence of an AgroP projection between the VP and the functional 
head associated with possessive -ing prevents this affix from be- 
having like a passive morpheme in being assigned the external 9- 
role, blocking a sentence such as (24) (for further discussion see 
Nunes 1994b, 1994c): 

(24) *The house's buying by John impressed everyone. 

7. Conclusion 

According to the analysis developed above, the apparently deep 
differences between the participle constructions of Lithuanian and 
English, for instance, reduces to one morphological difference: the 
participial T head in Lithuanian is a Case assigner. Thus, Lithuanian 
participial T head is able to Case-mark not only an NP thai it forms a 
chain with in regular passives (a 'ty-phrase'), but any Caseless NP 
that passes through its Specifier. 

This properly is what derives apparently exotic impersonal pas- 
sives of unaccusative, raising and passivized verbs in Lithuanian. To 
the extent that the term passive is descriptively used to refer to 
constructions in which a 6-role is assigned to the participle affix, it is 
misleading to call these constructions impersonal passives, for their 
participle affixes are assigned no 9-rolc at all.-^ Under the approach 
developed here, the common feature between 'personal' and 'imper- 
sonal' passives is in terms of Case, rather than S-Theory. 

358 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 


* This is a shortened version of a paper I presented at the Fifth 
Conference of the Formal Linguistics Society of Mid-America, which 
took place May 20-22, at the University of Illinois at Urbana- 
Champaign. I am grateful to Norbert Hornstein, Ellen Thompson and 
Juan Uriagereka, for insightful comments and suggestions on an ear- 
lier version. Remaining problems are my own responsibility. I wou 
also like to thank Raimune Dainora and Darius Chesonis for help w 
the Lithuanian data. Finally, I would like to thank the Fellowship 
Office of the University of Maryland for financial support. 

^ I maintained Baker, Johnson, & Roberts's glosses for (3)-(5). 
The glosses of the remaining Lithuanian sentences cited in this paper 
are based on the ones given by Matthews (1955) and Timberlake 
(1982), for the reasons discussed in section 3. I will also differ from 
Baker, Johnson, & Roberts in using PPLE. ('present or past participle') 
instead of PASS, ('passive') to translate participial forms, for reasons 
that will become clear. Finally, hyphens will be employed in par- 
ticipial forms in order to facilitate the identification of relevant 

2 I follow Chomsky (1993:27-28) in taking lexical elements to be 
fully inflected at the point of their insertion into a phrasal marker. 
Descriptions such as 'the affix x projects into XP' or 'the affix x re- 
ceives a e-role' in the course of the following discussion should thus 
be understood as abbreviations for 'the head associated with the af- 
fix X projects into XP' or 'the head associated with the affix x receives 
a 0-role'. 

3 I use the term by-phrase to refer to the element that, together 
with the participle affix, realizes the external argument of a verbal 
predicate (see Jaeggli 1986, and Baker, Johnson, & Roberts 1989, 
among others). 

^ A similar conclusion is reached by Postal (1986) within the 
framework of Arc Pair Grammar. 


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Baker, Mark, Kyle Johnson, & Ian Roberts. 1989. Passive arguments 
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BELLETTI, Adriana. 1990. Generalized verb movement. Turin: Rosen- 
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Chomsky, Noam. 1981. Lectures on government and binding. Dor- 
drecht: Foris. 

. 1986. Knowledge of language: its nature, origin and use. New 

York: Praeger. 

ild \ 
ith \ 

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. 1991. Some notes on economy of derivation and represen- 
tation. Principles and parameters in comparative grammar, ed. 
by R. Freidin, 417-454. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press. 

. 1993. A minimalist program for linguistic theory. The view 

from building 20; essays in honor of Sylvain Bromberger, ed. by 
K. Hale & S. Keyser, 1-52. Cambridge: MIT Press. 

. & Howard Lasnik. 1993. Principles and Parameters Theory. 

Syntax: an international handbook of contemporary research, ed. 
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506-569. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter. 

Dambriunas, Leonardas, Antanas Klimas & William Schmalstieg. 
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ciscan Fathers. 

Jaeggll Osvaldo. 1986. Passive. Linguistic Inquiry 17.587-622. 

Keenan, Edward & Alan Timberlake. 1985. Predicate formation rules 
in Universal Grammar. Proceedings of the West Coast Conference 
on Formal Linguistics 4, Stanford University, Palo Alto, Calif. 

Matthews, W. 1955. Lithuanian constructions with neuter passive 
participle. Slavonic and East European Review 33.350-371. 

MILSARK, Gary. 1988. Singl-/M^. Linguistic Inquiry 19.611-634. 

NerbonNE, John. 1982. Some passives not characterized by universal 
rules: subjectless impersonals. The Ohio State Working Papers in 
Linguistics 26.59-92. 

NUNES, Jairo. 1993. English participle constructions: evidence for a 
[-(-PF,-LF] Case. University of Maryland Working Papers in Lin- 
guistics 1.66-79. 

. 1994a. Concordancia de particfpio em lituano. To appear in 

Letras de Hoje. 

. 1994b. Participle constructions in Lithuanian: a minimalist 

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. 1994c. Relativizing Case Theory. Proceedings of the 23rd West- 
ern Conference on Linguistics, 350-362, University of Wash- 
ington, Seattle. 

Perlmutter, David. 1978. Impersonal passives and the unaccusative 
hypothesis. Proceedings of the Fourth Annual Meeting of the 
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360 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

Williams, Edwin. 198 L Argument structure and morphology. The 
Linguistic Review 1.81-114. 

Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2. 1994 


Mari Broman Olsen 
Northwestern University 

This paper analyzes lexical aspect as the privative 
features [+dynamic], [+durative] and [+telic]. rather than as 
equipollent features. Aspectual interpretation may there- 
fore be described as monotonic composition of verbs with 
other constituents: marked verb features may not be 
changed, whereas unmarked features may become marked 
by other constituents. This model also predicts the variety 
of interpretations observed with unmarked features. Six 
feature combinations are proposed, representing four 
Vendler classes (states, activities, accomplishments, 
achievements) and two other attested classes 
(semelfactives, and stage-level states). The non-occurring 
combinations are excluded by appealing to the inherent 
temporal structure suggested by the features. 

1. Introduction 

Many linguists and philosophers have observed that verbs rep- 
resent situations (events or states) with different properties of lexi- 
cal aspect, also known as Aktionsart. Some attribute the differences 
to equipollent semantic features (1),^ dividing verbs into classes 
based on these features, often Vendler's four: state, activity, accom- 
plishment, and achievement (Vendler 1957; Kenny 1963; Dowty 
1979, inter alia). Others propose that aspect is structural, since ad- 
verbials and verb complements appear to change the aspectual class 
(Verkuyl 1972, 1993; Pustejovsky 1991). In this paper 1 argue that 
the observed range of compositional effects may be described 
monotonically without special compositional or structural rules, by 
analyzing the aspectual features as privative oppositions (2). 

(1) Previous literature: equipollent lexical aspect features 

Aspectual Class Telic Dynamic Durative Examples 

Slate - - -I- know, have 

Activity - + + run, paint 

Accomplishment + -t- + destroy 

Achievement -i- + - notice, win 

(2) My analysis: privative lexical aspect features 

Aspectual Class Telic Dynamic Durative Examples 
State -I- know, have 

Activity -i- + run, paint 

Accomplishment -t- + + destroy 

Achievement + -i- notice, win 

362 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

In a privative analysis, marked features ([+telic], [+dynamic] and 
[+durative]) may not be changed by other sentential constituents, but 
their unmarked complements (atelic, stative and punctiliar) may be- 
come marked. Unlike previous accounts, my model predicts both a 
restricted range of compositional possibilities and a broader range of 
pragmatic implicatures associated with unmarked features. In the 
next section I discuss the standard analysis of the verb classes as a 
cluster of equipollent feature values. In §3 I use data from English to 
argue that the lexical aspect features are privative. I provide support 
from a variety of phenomena in other languages whose explanation 
seems to depend on lexical aspect features. In §4 I discuss the four 
additional feature combinations in (3), illustrating semelfactives and 
stage-level states and ruling out the unattested combinations based 
on the implicit temporal structure the features suggest. 

(3) Other privative feature combinations 

Aspectual Class Telic Dynamic Durative Examples 
Semelfactives + cough, tap 

Stage-level states + + be sick 

[unattested] + 


2. Verb classes 

Models with more than four lexical aspect classes generally 
subdivide a Vendler class. L. Carlson (1981:40) and Bach (1986:6), 
for example, have two kinds of states and two kinds of achievements 
(cf. G. Carlson 1977; Smith 1991). Analyses with fewer distinctions 
collapse two Vendler classes, often accomplishments and achieve- 
ments (Kenny 1963; Verkuyl 1972, 1993; Mourelatos 1981; Nakhi- 
movsky 1988; Dowty 1991; Pustejovsky 1991, inter alia). I therefore 
base my discussion on Vendler's classes. 

In all models of lexical aspect, verbs are assigned — or assumed to 
be assigned — to classes based on their behavior in a variety of syn- 
tactic and semantic frames. Although the frames are sometimes in- 
formally described as tests for class membership (Dowty 1979:5 If, 
Dorr 1993:342f), they actually focus on individual features distin- 
guishing the classes from each other. However, the tests are noto- 
riously difficult to apply, since context and other sentence con- 
stituents often affect precisely the feature the tests are supposed to 
tease out. For example, run is generally described as an atelic activity 
(4), but sentences like (5), with a direct object, or like (6), with a goal 
prepositional phrase, represent telic accomplishments. 

(4) Lee ran. Activity 

(5) Lee ran a mile. Accomp. 

(6) Lee ran to the store. Accomp. 

From this type of data, Verkuyl (1972, 1993), Pustejovsky 
(1991) and others have proposed explicit rules for describing when 

Olsen: The semantics and pragmatics of lexical aspect features 363 

the aspectual class of a sentence differs from that of the verb. 2 The 
need for explicit compositional rules stems primarily from the as- 
sumption that verbs fully specify equipollent features, and that both 
positive and negative values have equal semantic weight and define 
a homogeneous class (cf. Jakobson 1932; Forsyth 1970:7; Smith 
1991:28). In an equipollent analysis [-i-telic] verbs denote situations 
with an inherent end, and [-telic] those without an end; [+dynamicj 
verbs denote events, and [-dynamic] states; [-i-durative] verbs denote 
situations that hold at an interval of time, and [-durative] punctiliar 
situations. With fully specified features, independent principles are 
required to explain how and why sentences like (5)-(6) become 
[-(-telic], given that run is [-telic]. 

Although the positive features define a homogeneous class with 
a consistent interpretation, the negative features do not. L. Carlson 
observes this asymmetrical variation: he marks verbs [4-feature] if 
they pass relevant tests 'WITHOUT ANY COMMENT' and [-feature] 'other- 
wise' (1981:39). Thus [-feature] verbs, with the appropriate prag- 
matic comment, may, in fact, be interpreted as [-i-feature], whereas 
[-i-feature] verbs have a uniform interpretation. This asymmetrical 
behavior is the hallmark of a privative opposition, in which only ho- 
mogeneous classes are marked (1). Unmarked classes have no pos- 
itive characterization but are defined 'as not inherently possessing 
the meaning of the 'marked' member' and 'sometimes may even 
carry the meaning which is inherent in the 'marked' member' 
(Forsyth 1970:6). As a non-linguistic example, consider religious 
groups as privative oppositions: Christians, Muslims, Jews, and 
Buddhists are relatively homogeneous classes characterized by cer- 
tain beliefs and behaviors; non-Christians, non-Muslims, etc. are not. 
Contrast religious groups with the equipollent opposition between 
male and female, where each class may be positively described. 

In my privative analysis, the perception of equipollent lexical 
aspect relations may be attributed to the Gricean maxims of quantity 
and quality (Grice 1975). A hearer may infer [-feature] from the fact 
that the speaker did not use a verb asserting [-i-feature]; that is. he 
infers the speaker would have asserted [-(-feature] if she could have. 
Since the [-feature] interpretation is derived by pragmatic impli- 
cature, it is cancelable. Therefore, in the appropriate pragmatic con- 
text verbs unmarked for tclicity, dynamicity or durativity may be 
used to implicate presence of the relevant feature. 

3, Aspectual features 

I now discuss the three features, arguing that each represents a 
privative opposition. For the telic opposition 1 show that [-(-telic] has a 
consistent, uncancelable semantic meaning, whereas verbs not 
marked telic may be interpreted as either telic or atelic depending 
on other lexical constituents and the pragmatic context. Precisely 
analogous arguments may be made for the dynamic and durative 
oppositions, however I limit myself to demonstrating that verbs with 

364 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

the unmarked features (stative and punctiliar verbs, standardly 
treated as [-dynamic] and [-durative]) may have the meaning of the 
marked member. See Olsen (1994) for a full discussion. 

3.1 Telicity as a privative opposition 

Telic verbs are said to denote situations with an inherent end or 
goal (Garey 1957:106; Brinton 1988:27; Smith 1991:29). In a test that 
goes back to Aristotle's Metaphysics (1048b: Ross 1928), progressive 
forms of atelic verbs are said to entail the corresponding perfect 
form (7), whereas telic verbs do not (8)-(9). 

(7) Lee is running entails Lee has run. 

(8) Lee is destroying his car does not entail Lee has destroyed it. 

(9) Lee is winning does not entail Lee has won. 

However, as noted above, sentences with atelic verbs may be made 
[+telic] by other constituents. With these constituents, the atelic en- 
tailment relationship fails (10)-(11).3 

(10) Lee is running a mile does not entail Lee has run a mile. 

(11) Lee is running to the store does not entail 

Lee has run to the store. 

Accounts of telicity based on equipollent features or structural 
composition fail to predict that [+telic] may not be changed by other 
sentential constituents, whereas [-telic] may. Furthermore, neither 
approach accounts for the fact that, in the appropriate pragmatic 
context, atelic verbs may be used to implicate a telic situation, with- 
out addition of a telic constituent. For example, if both speaker and 
hearer mutually believe that Lee runs five miles every day, Lee is 
running may be used by the speaker to implicate that Lee is in the 
middle of one of these five-mile runs, and Lee has run that one is 
completed. In such a context, Lee is running does not entail Lee has 
run. The telic and the atelic interpretations of bare run are pragmatic 
implicatures, since they are cancelable without contradiction (12) 
(Grice 1975). 

(12) Lee is running around like a maniac, not his usual five miles. 

Running is not an exceptional case: according to Dowty (1979:61), any 
activity verb may have a contextually-dependent end point. In con- 
trast, [-i-telic] is semantic and not cancelable (13).^ Although durative 
adverbials are supposed to make accomplishments atelic, they actu- 
ally make them iteratively telic, whether the [-i-telic] feature is con- 
tributed by the verb (13a) or by another constituent: to the store in 
(13b). 5 

(13) (a) Lee won for years. 

(b) Lee ran to the store for years. 

Thus verbs marked [-i-telic] are uniformly interpreted as such, 
independent of other constituents or pragmatic contexts, whereas 

Olsen: The semantics and pragmatics of lexical aspect features 365 

verbs unmarked for telicity do not have a homogeneous interpre- 
tation. Telicity is therefore best analyzed as a privative opposition, 
with only [+telic] marked. If [-telic] is not part of verb semantics, we 
should not find phenomena sensitive to atelicity. Work on unac- 
cusative verbs supports this analysis. Although telicity and atelicity 
have been suggested as diagnostics for unaccusativity and unerga- 
tivity, respectively (L. Levin 1986; Zaenen 1986; Van Valin 1990), 
closer examination reveals that only telicity is determinate: in- 
transitive telic verbs are unaccusative, whereas atelic verbs may be 
either unergative or unaccusative (Levin & Rappaport Hovav 1994). 

3.2 Dynamicity as a privative opposition 

Dynamicity also shows privative asymmetry. The opposition be- 
tween events and states is virtually ubiquitous in the literature, 
based on a constellation of properties, including the notions of 
change, agency, energy and duration (cf. Levin & Rappaport Hovav 
1994). Dowty (1979:184) identifies dynamic situations with an 
ability to occur in do constructions (14). 

(14) What Lee did was run/destroy his car/notice a bug/?be Thai. 
Lee ran/destroyed his car/noticed a bug/?was Thai, and so did 

Jackendoff (1983:68) puts events in frames entailing the notion 
'happen' (15). 

(15) What happened/occurred/took place was... 

Lee ran/destroyed his car/won a race/noticed a bug/?was 

Chung & Timberlake (1985:215-6) and (Brinton 1988:3,28,35) ob- 
serve that verbs that have agents are all events — although not all 
events have agents (16). 

(16) The rock rolled down the hill. 

They therefore suggest agency frames as tests: the imperative (17), 
persuade verb complements (18), and agentive advcrbials (19).^-^ 
Some also cite the progressive as an event test (20) (Dowty 1979). 

(17) Run home! Destroy the letter! ?Be Thai! 

(18) I persuaded Lee to run home/destroy the car/?be Thai. 

(19) Lee intentionally ran home/destroyed the car/?was Thai. 

(20) Lee was running/destroying the car/winning/'?being Thai. 

The diagnostics for this opposition are tellingly asymmetrical: 
they only identify contexts in which dynamic verbs are found. No 
stative frames are proposed.*^ However, even 'classic stative predi- 
cates like know and love' (Dowty 1979:179) may appear in these 
contexts with dynamic interpretations (21)-(26).9 

366 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

(21) What X did was... 

What Ted did was always know where Mary was. 

What Jane did was love her husband. 

What the garbage did was stink. 

What Mary's face did was glow with excitement. 

(22) What happened was... 

What happened was Ted knew where Mary was. 

What happened was Jane loved her husband. 

What happened was the garbage stank. 

What took place was Mary's face glowed with excitement. 

What happened was there was a lot of that. (Ketza Levine, 


(23) Imperatives 

Know about the movie rating system. (Chicago Tribune) 

Love your enemies. (RSV: Matthew 5:44) 

Pepsi. ..reminds you to be young, have fun, drink Pepsi, (ad) 

(24) Complements of persuade verbs 

The recent assault forced Ted always to know where Mary 


Terry persuaded Jane to love her husband. can you compel the Gentiles to live like Jews? (RSV: 

Galatians 2:14) 

(25) Progressive 

Jim Johnson, in his fifties... a lot of people not knowing him 
from outside football. (Dick Enberg, NBC Sports, 1-30-94) 

I'm just loving it. (attested by Bland 1988:60) 

Digory was disliking his uncle more every minute. (Lewis, C.S. 
1955. The Magician's Nephew. New York: Collier, 20) 

If I do that... it's being in charge of the whole area. (E. Olsen, 2- 

(26) Agentive adverbials 

Lee was deliberately silent. 

Joseph of Arimathea...was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly. 

(RSV: John 19:38) 

Since states are unmarked for telicity as well as dynamicity, my 
analysis predicts that they may be used to implicate situations that 
are both dynamic and telic, that is, accomplishments. Several classes 
of verbs alternate regularly between states and accomplishments. Fill 
verbs with LOCATUM subjects (Levin 1993:71) have both interpre- 
tations (27a); AGENTIVE subjects make only accomplishment readings 
available (27b). 

(27) Fill verbs: bind, block, carpet, fill, flood... 

(a) Water flooded the house. State/Accomp. 

(b) I flooded the house with water. Accomp. 

Verbs that undergo Container Subject (28) and Raw Material Subject 
alternations (29) (Levin 1993:72) also have both interpretations. 

Olsen: The semantics and pragmatics of lexical aspect features 367 

(28) Container Subject alternating verbs: contain, include, 

(a) The affidavit includes the revised language. State 

(b) I included the revised language in the affidavit. Accomp. 

(29) Raw Material Subject alternating verbs: bake, carvi 

(a) That rich Illinois soil grows wonderful corn. State 

(b) Farmers grow wonderful corn from that rich soil. Accomp. 

My analysis of dynamicity as a privative opposition is further 
supported by the fact that dynamicity and not stativity serves as a 
semantic determinant in a variety of linguistic phenomena. Whereas 
the IMPERFECTIVES in Navajo (30) and Mandarin (31), are restricted to 
events (Smith 1991; cf. Dahl 1985:90), no language restricts either 
imperfective or perfective grammatical aspect to states (Dahl 1985; 
Olsen 1994). 

(30) hooghangoo hish'nah Activity 
'I'm crawling along toward the house' (Smith 1991:400) 

(31) Zhangsan zai xie yi-feng xin Accomp. 
Zhangsan / ZAI / write / one-classifier / letter 

'Zhangsan is writing a letter' (Smith 1991:357) 

Van Valin (1990) claims that all UNACCUSATIVE verbs have a state in 
their aspectual structure; they either are states, or they are accom- 
plishments and achievements with a result state. Levin & Rappaport 
Hovav (1994) argue that this is not the case for the simple states. 
They show that the notion of stativity is continuous rather than dis- 
crete, and that even the most stative unaccusatives — verbs of emis- 
sion such as shine and glow (cf. Levin 1993) 'show uniform behavior 
with respect to the Unaccusative Hypothesis,' but varying behavior 
on stative tests. Neither a continuum of stativity, nor inconclusive re- 
sults on stative tests is unexpected if a stative interpretation de- 
pends on pragmatic implicature. 

3.3 Durativity as a privative opposition 

Durative situations — states, activities and accomplishments — are 
said to take an interval of time and achievements to denote punc- 
tiliar situations. Tests for durativity are used primarily to distinguish 
accomplishments from achievements; both Dowty (1986) and Smith 
(1991:31) identify problems with this distinction. Dowty concludes it 
is not semantic but due to how we 'normally understand' events 
(1986:42-43; cf. Mourelatos 1981), i.e. to pragmatics. However vari- 
ation is only noted with verbs unmarked for durativity: accom- 
plishments are always durative, but achievements are not always 
punctiliar. Punctiliarity is therefore an implicature associated with a 
verb unmarked for durativity, an implicature which may be canceled 
by durative temporal adverbials such as during the same period 
(32), H'/z^rt- clauses (33), and for a long time (34). For (32) the object 
increase also requires notice to span an interval.'^ 

368 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1 /2 ( 1 994) 

(32) During the same period, immigration lawyers, family coun- 
selors and shelter operators have noticed a sharp increase in 
the number of battered and abused immigrants who feel 
caught in the situation. (wsj/wsj29) 

(33) John was dying when the doctor arrived. (Dowty 1986:43) 

(34) He's been dropping that shoe for a long time. (NPR on/ 

Gephardt's switch to anti-NAFTA) 

In fact, from one perspective, the achievement die in (33) 'is nor- ' | 
mally a process... when people die of natural causes, it's a slow dete- 
rioration, not like putting out a light bulb' (Forensic pathologist. 
Autopsy TV program). In other words, it is not normally [-durative]. 

Further support for a privative analysis of durativity comes 
from restrictions on grammatical imperfectives (Olsen 1994). In 
Mandarin, for example, the grammatical imperfective markers zai 
and zhe- occur only with durative verbs (35)-(36), and not with 
verbs unmarked for durativity (37)-(38). No language appears to 
restrict either imperfective or perfective grammatical aspect to 
punctiliar verbs. 

(35) Ta-men zai da qiu Activity 
3-p / ZAI /play / ball 

'They are playing ball' (Smith 1991:357) 

(36) Qi-zhe ma zhao ma Activity 
ride-ZHE / horse / seek horse 

'Look for a horse while riding a horse' (Smith 1991:361) 

(37) *Ta zai ying sai pao Achieve. 
3s / ZAI / win / race / run 

'S/He is winning, the race' (Smith 1991:357) 

(38) *Ta si-zhe Achieve. 
3s / die-ZHE 

'S/He is dying' (Li & Thompson 1981; 196) 

I have argued that lexical aspect consists of three marked mem- 
bers of privative semantic oppositions, with uncancelable interpre- 
tations, and their unmarked counterparts, the interpretation of which 
depends on pragmatic context and other sentential constituents. 
Equipollent and structural accounts describe this data either by vi- 
olating monotonicity, in allowing features to change (e.g. Smith 1991) M 
or by introducing additional features and compositional rules (Puste- ^ 
jovsky 1991; Verkuyl 1993). The generalization that only atelicity, 
stativity and punctiliarity may change does not follow naturally from 
such models. 

4. Other feature combinations 

Vendler's classes represent only four of eight possible combi- 
nations of the three features. Two of the remaining combinations are 
attested (39), repeated from (3). 

Olsen: The semantics and pragmatics of lexical aspect features 369 

(39) Other privative feature combinations 

Aspectual Class Telic Dynamic Durative Examples 
Semelfactives + cough, tap 

Stage-level states + + be sick 

[unattested] + 


4.1 Semelfactives: [+dynamic] 

The combination in (39a) represents a class of verbs which 
Smith (1991:28) calls SEMELFACTIVES, from the Latin semel meaning 
'once'. According to Smith (1991:30), verbs like cough, knock, hiccup 
and tap stereotypically denote single 'instantaneous atelic events'.' • 
In my analysis semelfactives are marked [+dynamic] and unmarked 
for telicity and durativity. The interpretations of atelicity and punc- 
tiliarity associated with them follow from pragmatic contexts rather 
than semantic features. Other constituents, such as a direct object 

(40) or a verb particle (41), make semelfactive verbs telic. They may 
also be made durative, as in (40), where the object message con- 
ditions an iterative durative interpretation of tap. ' ~ 

(40) The telegraph operator tapped a message. 

(41) John coughed out a bit of bone. 

4.2 Stage-level states: [+telic, +durative] 

The feature combination in (39b) describes [+telic], generally 
stative, situations. G. Carlson (1977) proposes two kinds of states: 
individual-level and stage-level. INDIVIDUAL-LEVEL STATES are always 
true of an individual. STAGE-LEVEL STATES have an inherent end, that 
is, telicity. According to Carlson, be sick (42) is a stage-level [+telic] 
state which is expected to end, whereas intelligence (43) is not. 

(42) Jake is sick. 

(43) Jake is intelligent. 

The relative temporariness of a state has also been proposed as a 
determinant for selection of Spanish auxiliaries (cf. discussion in 
Lujan 1981:167). Like Vendler's states, stage-level states may be 
used to implicate either stative or dynamic situations. G. Carlson 
(1977) claims, in fact, that the stage-level states are more event-like 
than individual-level states: they 'are more akin to things that 
HAPPEN' (1977:448, emphasis in original). 

4.3 Unattested classes: [+telic]; [0] 

The remaining classes, (39c) and (39d), appear not to occur at 
all. The first, marked only [+telic], represents a verb with an inherent 
end, but no other consistent features. The closest candidates in En- 
glish would be verbs such as those in (44) which denote the end of a 
situation (Newmeyer 1975:25; Brinton 1988:144). 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(44) break off, cease, cut out, desist (from), finish, give up/over, 
knock off, lay off, stop 

However these verbs also denote the transition to an end; they are 
therefore [+dynamic]. Nouns have no such restriction; they may sim- 
ply denote the end of a situation without a transition (45). 

(45) (the) destination, end, goal 

Thus the inability to denote a simple end seems to be linked to the 
category VERB. Since verbs with no marked features also fail to occur, 
we might describe a class restriction as in (46). 

(46) A VERB must be minimally [+dynamic] or [+durative]. 

4.4 The temporal structure of the features 

The restriction in (46) may be tied to the temporal character- 
istics implicit in the lexical aspect features, as summarized in (47). 

(47) If a verb is [-i-durative], it denotes a temporal interval. 
If a verb is [+dynamic], it denotes change (over time). 
If a verb is [+telic], it denotes an end. 

The feature [+durative] asserts that an event takes an interval. The 
feature [-i-dynamic] presupposes such an interval, since one may not 
identify CHANGE at a point. The feature [+telic] asserts that the du- 
ration and change must reach an end. Thus situations develop along a 
temporal axis as in (48): they are first dynamic and durative and 
then reach the end denoted by telic. 

(48) [+dynamic] 
[+durative] [+telic] 

Time > 

The interval denoted by [+durative] and/or [+dynamic] may be called 
the event NUCLEUS and that denoted by [+telic] the CODA (cf. Freed 
1979). By saying that a given feature is 'marked' on a verb or pred- 
icate, I assume that the verb denotes the piece of temporal structure 
associated with that feature. The aspectual classes may therefore be 
represented as in (49). 

















Temporary state 



Unlike the six attested classes, the unattested classes in (50) do not 
specify a nucleus. 

Olsen: The semantics and pragmatics of lexical aspect features 371 

(50) Unattested classes NUCLEUS CODA 

? [+telic] 


The generalization in (46) may therefore be restated as a NUCLEUS 
requirement (51). 

(51) A VERB must denote a situation with a nucleus. [(46) restated] 

This restriction echoes those pertaining to other timing units, such as 
the phonological syllable, for which a nucleus is required, but an on- 
set or a coda is relatively optional (Goldsmith 1990:74; Prince & 
Smolensky 1993:87). 

5. Conclusion 

I have argued that the lexical aspect classes should be described 
as combinations of marked privative features, rather than fully spec- 
ified equipollent features. Unlike previous accounts, my analysis al- 
lows aspectual composition to be monotonic without introducing 
stipulative rules. My privative model also predicts the range of prag- 
matic implicatures associated with unmarked features. In addition, I 
have shown that the features may be used to describe other classes 
proposed in the literature. I excluded unattested classes by appealing 
to the temporal structure implicit in the features. In recent work on 
lexical aspect, Pustejovsky (1991:48) argues that a level of event 
structure is necessary, since 'grammatical phenomena. ..make refer- 
ence to the internal structure of events.' However, as I have shown, 
several of these grammatical phenomena, including unaccusativity 
and grammatical aspect, may be perspicuously described as depen- 
dent on marked privative features. The work reported here suggests 
that event structure might be derivable from these features and 
their implicit temporal organization. I pursue this hypothesis in my 
analysis of lexical and grammatical aspect in Olsen (1994). 


1 See charts in Brinton (1988:57) and Smith (1991:30). Brinton 
has two additional features (homogeneity and multiplicity) as well as 
an additional class (series). Smith has an additional class (semel- 
factive: see §4). 

2 In Verkuyl's model, run is [-i-ADD TO, -SQA], and Lee, a mile. 
and to the store are each [+SQA]. By the 'plus principle,' sentences 
with three positive features have 'terminativc' sentential aspect; 
others are 'durative.' Sentence (4) has two: [-t-ADD TO] from run and 
[-I-SQA] from the subject; it is therefore durative. Sentences (5)-(6) are 
terminative. since they also have a [+SQA] complement. For Puste- 
jovsky (1991) the aspectual interpretation of (5)-(6) results from an 
'event-type shifting' — from activity to accomplishment/ achievement. 

372 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1 994) 

These shifts 'may occur because of explicit rules setting out the ways 
events can compose and be modified' (1991:64-5). 

3 Verkuyl (1972, 1994) has a detailed discussion of the types of 
constituents that add telicity ([+SQA] in his analysis). I assume that a 
constituent C adds a feature F, if without C the verb patterns like 
other verbs unmarked for F, and with C like verbs marked for F. 

'^ Surprisingly, Aristotle claims that the Greek PaSi/^co 'walk' lacks 
the atelic entailment pattern, based, I suggest, on pragmatic impli- 
cature, since the verb lacks a telic prefix. At that time one walked 
only to get somewhere, not for exercise. In the entailment passage 
most often cited (i), he claims: 

(i) is not true that at the same time a thing is walking and has 
walked, or is building and has built, or is coming to be and has 
come to be, or is being moved and has been moved... But it is 
the same thing that at the same time has seen and is seeing, or 
is thinking and has thought. The latter sort of process, then I 
call an actuality [evepyeiav], and the former a movement [Kivrjoiv] 
(Metaphysics 1048b). 

One translator of Aristotle captures the pragmatically implicated end 
in this passage as 'walking... is not having had a walk'. 

5 This may not be demonstrated by the entailment test, how- 
ever, since the present progressive is independently unacceptable 
with durative adverbials (i). 

(i) (a) *Lee is running to the store for years, 
(b) *Lee is running a mile for years. 

6 Brinton (1988:32) cites additional agentive frames from King 
(1968:12-27) 'adjectives of praise and blame (foolishly, presump- 
tuous, thoughtless), adjectives of the 'eager' group (anxious, reluc- 
tant), purpose expressions, causative 'have', 'forget to' expressions 
(decide to, remember to, neglect to), certain catenatives (mean to, 
hasten to, up and fixing' to), commands, permissive may, shall I, 
[and] 'tell to do something' expressions'. 

"^ Agency is closely related to the notion of control, the ability to 
effect change. Notice and win are better on the agentive tests if it is 
clear in the context that the subject has control over the outcome (i- 
ii) (cf. Dowty 1979:184). 

(i) I persuaded Michael Jordan to win the slam-dunk contest, 
(ii) Paul noticed my new haircut intentionally (= made a point to 
look at). 

8 Dorr (1993:343) cites this as a problem with using the tests to 
classify verbs in a corpus: classes can only be uniquely identified if 
the frames give environments where the classes DO occur, rather than 
where they DO NOT. Dorr had to add two tests to the list in Dowty 
(1979) to identify any verb class. 

Olsen: The semantics and pragmatics of lexical aspect features 373 

9 Levin & Rappaport Hovav (1994) observe that the stink and 
glow sentences (their examples) also have an inceptive interpre- 

'0 Notice in (37) is interpreted as durative even without a plural 
subject or a durative adverbial (i). 

(i) An immigration lawyer has noticed a sharp increase. 

•' Bach (1986:6) describes a similar class of 'momentaneous 
happenings,' including notice, recognize, and flash once. He contrasts 
them with achievements (e.g. die, reach the top) which have durative 
preliminary stages. 

'2 The iterative reading is not the only durative reading for 
semelfactives in the progressive: cough in (i) represents a single du- 
rative cough in progress. 

(i) John and I were eating together. 1 had turned to look at the 
dessert tray, when I heard a cough followed by a choking 
sound. I guess the waiter saved him with a quick-thinking 
Heimlich maneuver. He said John was coughing when he 
grabbed him around the middle. 

This is at least true in English, French and Chinese (Olsen 1994). The 
Slavic semelfactives appear to have a more uniform single punctiliar 
event reading (Rami Dhingra-Nair, p.c). 


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DAHL, O. 1985. Tense and aspect systems. Oxford: Basil BlackwcU. 

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. 1991. Thematic proto-roles and argument selection. Language 


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Forsyth, J. 1970. A grammar of aspect: usage and meaning in the 
Russian verb. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 

Freed, A. 1979. The semantics of English aspectual complementation. 
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Garey, H. 1957. Verbal aspect in French. Language 33:2.91-110. 

Goldsmith, J. 1990. Autosegmental and metrical phonology. 

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Michael S. Hart, Executive Director. Illinois Benedictine College. 

Jackendoff, R. 1983. Semantics and cognition. Cambridge: MIT 
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JakoBSON, R. 1932. Zur Struktur des russischen Verbums. R. Jakobson 
1971. Selected writings II. The Hague: Mouton, 3-15. 

Kenny, A. 1963. Action, emotion and will. London: Routledge. 

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Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Janina Rado 
University of Massachusetts, Amherst 

r In this paper I will discuss two types of A'-depen- 

dencies in Hungarian and their relevance for the Bounded 
Connectivity Hypothesis of Stabler 1994. The first type of 
construction, wh-chains, will provide straightforward evi- 
dence for the BCH, while the other, topicalization, seems to 
be at odds with Stabler's theory. I will argue, however, that 
this apparent counterexample can be accounted for by re- 
stricting the domain of application of the BCH to truly am- 
biguous structures. Multiple topics occupying the same po- 
sition obey the Nested E)ependency Constraint, which elimi- 
nates ambiguity. The memory burden posed by iterated oc- 
currences of the same relationship is thus relieved and the 
BCH becomes unnecessary. This will be argued to provide 
further motivation for treating the BCH as a consequence of 
the limitations of human memory capacity. 

1. Introduction: The Bounded Connectivity Hypothesis 

Most recent theories of memory have assumed the existence of 
(a limited number of) units that can be employed for a variety of 
different purposes. Given this view, it is surprising that there are 
certain grammatical constructions that are perfectly acceptable if 
they occur only once, but that cannot be iterated. Probably the most 
well-known of such constructions is center-embedding: 

( 1 ) a. The house [(that) the malt lay in] was built by Jack. 

b. *The house [(that) the malt [(that) the rat ate] lay in] was 
built by Jack. 

c. ??She loves [the house [(that) the malt [(that) the rat ate] 
lay in]]. 

Stabler 1994 reviews a number of operations that have a similar 
(low) upper bound on iterability, including verb raising in Dutch and 
German, causativization in Quechua, and wh-movement of NPs with 
( the same morphological case in Hindi. In order to account for these 
phenomena. Stabler puts forward a fundamentally new theory of 
human memory. He proposes that instead of models of human pro- 
cessing mechanisms having available a homogeneous memory store, 
memory is better characterized as consisting of a small number of 
highly task-specific units that cannot be redeployed for a different 
purpose. These units or registers correspond to linguistic relations 
such as constituency or case-assignment. The result is that having 
more than two occurrences of the same relation within a given do- 
main puts a heavy burden on memory making the structure marg- 

378 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

inal or unacceptable. This hypothesis is formulated as the Bounded 
Connectivity Hypothesis (BCH): 

(2) There is a natural typology of linguistic relations such that 
the psychological complexity of a structure increases quickly 
when more than one relation of any given type connects a 
(partial) constituent a (or any element of a) to any element 
external to a. 

According to the BCH, (lb) is out because, given usual assump- 
tions about left-to-right incremental parsing, there is a stage in the 
parse which contains the three initial NPs but where none of the 
case-assigners have been encountered yet. At this stage there are 
three outstanding case-relations of the same type, whereas in (la), 
which is acceptable, we find at most two outstanding case-relations 
at any point. The contrast between the marginal (Ic) and the unac- 
ceptable (lb) shows that case assignment is indeed the crucial gram- 
matical relation here: although (Ic) contains a string that is super- 
ficially identical to (lb) (the house [(that) the malt [(that) the rat ate] 
lay in]), in (Ic) the first NP, the house, has already received Accus- 
ative from the matrix verb, thus there are only two outstanding case 
relations (for further arguments see Stabler 1994). 

Another example discussed by Stabler in support of the BCH is 
taken from Hindi. Hindi allows multiple wh-extractions landing in the 
same [Spec, CP]. As Stabler points out, however, this is only possible 
if the NPs heading the A'-chains are marked with distinct morpho- 
logical case. In this paper I want to discuss two types of A'-relations 
in Hungarian, which are similar to the Hindi data. They both involve 
A'-movement to the same syntactic position, but only one of them 
seem to directly fall under the Bounded Connectivity Hypothesis. 
Wh-movement will be shown to behave like the Hindi examples dis- 
cussed by Stabler, providing some rather strong evidence for the 
BCH. Topicalization, on the other hand, obeys a grammatical con- 
straint, requiring that the dependencies between the topic NPs and 
their traces be nested. These constructions seem to be exempt from 
the restriction formulated in the BCH. The paper is organized as fol- 
lows: the next section will give the necessary background on 
Hungarian syntax. In section 3, I will examine the properties of wh- 
movement which are relevant for the BCH and show that they sup- 
port Stabler's theory. In section 4, 1 will turn to topicalization which 
seems to violate the BCH. I will argue, however, that this is due to the 
existence of an independent constraint which ensures the unam- 
biguous interpretation of topicalized structures. It will be suggested 
that this constraint, that of nested dependencies, relieves the kind of 
memory burden that is otherwise present in iterated constructions, 
thus rendering the BCH's operation unnecessary. This is seen as pro- 
viding further support for Stabler's view that the restriction cap- 
tured in Bounded Connectivity Hypothesis arises as a consequence of 
the limited memory space available to the parser. Section 5 will offer 
a summary and some implications. 

Rado: Complexity limitations on parsers and grammais 379 

2. Some background in Hungarian 

Stabler proposes that the limitations on human memory can be 
stated in terms of independently motivated linguistic relations, case, 
A'-chains and V-movement being some of the important ones. Hun- 
garian, a non-Indo-European language, is interesting for this hypoth- 
esis since it has rich morphological case distinctions as well as a few 
different A'-relations. In the following I will be focusing on two of 
these, wh-movement and topicalization. 

2.1 Wh-movement 

In Hungarian, all wh-phrases must be in [Spec, CP] at S-struc- 
ture. Movement can be to the local [Spec, CP] (4) or long-distance 


(3) Tibor hallotta Mari-tol, [hogy Pista osszeveszett Kati-val]. 
'Tibor heard from Mari that Pista had a fight with Kati.' 

(4) Tibor hallotta Mari-tol, [hogy kivel veszett ossze Pista]. 2 
'Tibor heard from Mari that Pista had a fight with Kati.' 

(5) Ki-velj hallotta Tibor Mari-tol, [hogy Pista osszeveszett tj]? 
who- with/heard/Tibor/Mari-from/that/Pista-Nom/f ought 
'With whom did Tibor hear from Mari that Pista had a fight?' 

Since multiple wh-movement is possible, there may be more 
than one wh-phrase in a given [Spec,CP]. These wh-chains can orig- 
inate in different clauses. The order of the wh-phrases in [SpecCP] is 
relatively free and reflects their respective scope (cf. E. Kiss 1987): 

(6) whj whj [ tj [ tj ]] 
Whj whj [ tj [ t- ]] 

(7) a. Ki-tolj ki-velj hallotta Tibor tj, [hogy Pista 

who- from/ who- with/heard/Tibor-Nom/that/Pista-Nom 
osszeveszett tj]? 

'From whom did Tibor hear that Pista had a fight 
with whom?' 
b. Ki-velj ki-tolj hallotta Tibor tj, [hogy Pista osszeveszett t;]? 
who- with/who- from 

2.2 Topicalization 

Another type of A'-relation in Hungarian results from the move- 
ment of an NP to the front of the sentence with a corresponding 
change of interpretation whereby the initial NP is taken to be the 
topic the sentence (or the discourse) is about. This is to be distin- 
guished from focusing, that is, giving special emphasis or a con- 
trastive interpretation to a phrase. The latter will be mentioned 
briefly in 4. 

380 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

Topicalization, like wh-movement, can be local or long-distance. 
More than one topic is possible and NPs originating in different 
clauses can be moved to the same topic position. 

(8) Kati-val Mari-tol Tibor hallotta, [hogy Pista osszeveszett]. 
Kati-with/Mari-from/Tibor-Nom/heard/that/Pista-Nom/f ought 
'As for Mari, Tibor heard from her that as for Kati, Pista had a 
fight with her.' 

I will assume, following E. Kiss 1987 and Maracz 1989, that topi- 
calization structures result from syntactic movement rather than 
base-generation. The topic NP binds a gap in the clause, never a re- 
sumptive pronoun. Further, I will follow most syntactic literature in 
assuming that topics are adjoined to CP whereas wh-movement ter- 
minates in [Spec,CP]. The exact position of these phrases and the 
syntactic analysis of their recursion is not crucial for the present dis- 
cussion; for a variety of proposals, see Brody 1990, E. Kiss 1987, 
1992, Horvath 1986, and Maracz 1989, among others. 

With these background notions in hand, we can now turn to the 
types of multiple movement constructions relevant for the BCH. 

3. Data supporting the BCH: wh-movement 

Given the possibility of multiple wh-movement, it is interesting 
to examine whether there are any restrictions on the wh-phrases oc- 
cupying the same [Spec,CP]. In Hungarian, each argument of a given 
verb must bear a distinct case. It is thus necessary to look at long- 
distance movement and see if it can create the relevant structures. 
The underlined NPs in (9) are marked with the same morphological 
case. Local wh-movement is possible, as (10) shows, but long-dis- 
tance movement of the embedded wh-phrase is blocked under either 
interpretation (11): 

(9) Tibor hallotta Mari-tol, [hogy Pista elvalt 


'Tibor heard from Mari that Pista divorced Kati.' 

(10) Ki-tolj [hallotta Tibor t;, [hogy ki-tolj [valt el 
Pista t:]]]? 


'From whom did Tibor hear that Pista divorced whom?' 

(11) a. *Ki-tolj ki-tolj hallotta Tibor tj, [hogy Pista 

who- from/ who -from/heard/Tibor-Nom/th at/Pi sta-Nom/ 
elvalt tj]? 

'From whom did Tibor hear that Pista divorced whom?' 
b. * Ki-tolj ki-tolj hallotta Tibor tj, [hogy Pista elvalt tj]? 

Rado: Complexity limitations on parsers and grammars 381 

This is exactly what we expect to find given the BCH. The wh-phrases 
are connected to the rest of the structure by relations of the same 
kind, namely, wh-chains with identical case. Under Stabler's theory, 
this should result in an increase of complexity leading to parsing 
difficulties, in this case unacceptability.3.4 

There is another wh-movement phenomenon providing even 
more striking support for the Bounded Connectivity Hypothesis. In 
Hungarian, the subject typically bears Nominative, which is pre- 
served in local wh-movement: 

(12) Jani mondta, [hogy Erika talalkozott Juli-val]. 
'Jani said that Erika met Juli.' 

(13) Jani mondta, [hogy ki; tj talalkozott Juli-val]. 
'Jani said (told us) who met Juli.' 

If the subject undergoes long-distance wh-extraction, however, 
the phrase must be marked Accusative: 

(14) a. *Kij mondta Jani, [hogy tj talalkozott Juli-val]? 

intended meaning: 'Who did Jani say met Juli?' 
b. Ki-tj mondott Jani, hogy tj talalkozott Juli-val? 
'Who did Jani say that met Juli?' 

As (15) and (16) illustrate, the Nominative -^ Accusative switch 
is obligatory even if there is another wh-phrase in the same 
[SpecCP]. Again, there is no special restriction on the order of the 

(15) a. *Kij ki-velj mondott Jani, [hogy l^ talalkozott tj]? 

intended meaning: 'Who did Jani say met whom?' 
b. *Ki-velj kij mondott Jani, [hogy tj talalkozott tj]? 

(16) a. Ki-tj ki-velj mondott Jani, [hogy tj talalkozott tj]? 

'Who did Jani say met whom?' 
b. Ki-velj ki-tj mondott Jani, [hogy tj talalkozott tj]? 
who-with/ who-Acc 

A syntactic account of the case shift is beyond the scope of this pa- 
per, for an early attempt, see E. Kiss 1987. What is remarkable from 
the point of the discussion, however, is that the Nominative -> 
Accusative switch does not take place if the [SpecCP] contains an- 
other wh-phrase marked Accusative In this case Nominative is the 
only option: 

382 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(17) Feri tudja, [hogy Laci megtalalta Ildi-t]. 
'Feri knows that Laci found Ildi.' 

(18) Ki-tj tud Feri, [hogy tj megtalalta Ildi-t]? (subject extraction) 

'Who does Feri know found Ildi?' 

(19) Ki-t; tud Feri, [hogy Laci megtalalt t;]? (object extraction) 

'Who does Feri know that Laci found?' 

(20) a. *Ki-tj ki-tj tud Feri, [hogy tj megtalalt tj]?(subject+object ext.) 

wh o- A c c/ who- Ac c/knows/Feri-Nom/tn at/found 
intended meaning: 'Who does Feri know found whom?' 
b. *Ki-tj ki-tj tud Feri, [hogy tj megtalalt tj]?(subject+object ext.) 

(21) a. Kij ki-tj tud Feri, [hogy tj megtalalt t:]? 

Who does Feri know found whom?' 
b. Ki-tj kij tud Feri, [hogy tj megtalalt tj]? 

Thus an otherwise obligatory syntactic process is blocked precisely 
when it would create a configuration violating the BCH. 

It is possible to have three wh-phrases in the same [Spec,CP], 
although some speakers find these structures difficult to parse. 

(22) Kij ki-tj ki-velj^ tj mondott, hogy talalkozott tj tj^? 
w ho - Nom/w ho- Ac c/w ho- with/said/that/met 
'Who said that who met whom?' 

Trying to apply wh-movement to all three arguments in (17) above, 
however, we find that one of the wh-phrases must remain in the 
embedded [Spec,CP]. The reason is the following. The matrix subject 
must bear Nominative, since it has been moved to the local [SpecCP]. 
The embedded object must be marked Accusative. If this wh-phrase 
also occurs in the matrix [Spec,CP] that means that long-distance ex- 
traction of the embedded subject either with Nominative or Ac- 
cusative case will result in multiple instances of the same case in the 
same position, violating the BCH. Thus either the embedded subject 
or the embedded object is confined to the lower [Spec,CP]. 

(23) a. *Kij ki-tj ki-tj^ tj mondott, [hogy tj megtalalt tj^]? 

intended meaning: 'Who knows that who found who?' 
b. *Ki ki ki-t mondott, [hogy megtalalt]? 

(24) a. Kij kitj tj mondott, [hogy ki talalt meg tj]? (local mvt. of 

who-Nom/who-Acc/said/that/who-Nom/found embedded 
'Who said that who found who?' subject) 

Rado: Complexity limitations on parsers and grammars 383 

b. Kij kit; tj mondott. [hogy kitj^ talalt meg t: tj^]? (local mvt. of 
who-IVom/who-Acc who-Acc embedded object) 

To summarize: wh-movement in Hungarian shows the same 
property as in Hindi: wh-phrases with the same case are not allowed 
to occur in the same [Spec,CP]. Instead, the wh-phrase that would 
cause a violation of the BCH if moved long-distance, may only move 
to the local [SpecCP]. Furthermore, the Nominative — > Accusative 
switch which is normally required by the grammar is blocked if it 
would create a structure violating the Bounded Connectivity Hypoth- 
esis. This is different from the applications of the BCH that we have 
seen so far, which merely render an otherwise grammatical construc- 
tion unacceptable if it exceeds the bounds on connectivity. The 
Nominative -^ Accusative switch has not been adequately described 
in the syntax. However, the data I have presented suggests that it is 
indeed a rule of grammar; sentences like (14a) and (15), where the 
rule is not obeyed, are ungrammatical. Technically speaking, this im- 
plies that (21) should also be regarded as ungrammatical, although it 
is clearly the only acceptable form. The question of the status of (20) 
and (21) as well as of the precise formulation of the Nominative — > 
Accusative switch cannot be resolved within the scope of this paper. 5 

4. Data suggesting revision of the BCH: Topicalization 

As mentioned in 2.2, multiple topicalization is also allowed in 
Hungarian. Contrary to what we found with wh-extraction, however, 
it is possible to have two topics bearing the same case: 

(25) Tibor hallotta Mari-tol, hogy Pista elvalt 

Tibor- No m/heard/Mari-from/th at/Pi sta-Nom/divorced/ 

Kati-tol. (same as (9)) 


Tibor heard from Mari that Pista divorced Kati.' 

(26) Kati-tolj Mari-tol; Tibor hallotta t;, [hogy Pista . 
elvalt tj] 


'As for Mari, Tibor heard from her that as for Kali. Pista 

divorced her.' 

This is in sharp contrast with the examples of wh-movement in 
(11). At first sight, it seems that topicalization violates the BCH. 1 will 
try to show, however, that this is only part of the story. Thus notice 
that the sentence in (26) could in principle have two interpretations, 
depending on the assignment of the topicalized NPs to the respective 
clauses (I am ignoring here a third option, namely, conjunction, 
which would not be fully grammatical without an overt conjunctive 
anyway). Interestingly, only the interpretation given in (26) above is 

384 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(26') *Kati-t61j Mari-tol; Tibor hallotta tj, [hogy Pista elvalt t;]. 
'As for Kati, Tibor heard from her that as for Mari, 
Pista divorced her.' 

The only difference between the structures giving rise to the two 
interpretations is the relationship between the topic NPs and their 
traces. What we find is that the dependency between topics and their 
respective clauses must be nested, the intersecting configuration is 

(27) Topic j Topicj [ tj [ tj ]] 
*Topici Topicj [ tj [ tj ]] 

Similar constraints on nested interpretations have been shown 
to hold in wh-extraction in English and some Scandinavian languages, 
cf. Fodor 1978, Engdahl 1982. It has been argued that the Nested 
Dependency Constraint is best characterized as a parsing strategy 
used to avoid ambiguity. This would suggest that its application is 
limited to structures like (26), where in principle two interpretations 
are possible. It turns out, however, that the nested interpretation is 
obligatory even when the NPs in topic position have distinct case 
markings which, given the argument structure of the verb, make 
only one structure possible: 

(28) Tibor hallotta Mari-tol, [hogy Pista osszeveszett 
Tibor-Nom/heard/Mari-from/that/Pista-Nom/f ought/ 
Kati-val]. (same as (2)) 

'Tibor heard from Mari that Pista had a fight with Kati.' 

(29) a. Kati-valj Mari-toh Tibor hallotta tj, [hogy Pista 

osszeveszett tj]. 

'As for Mari, Tibor heard from her that as for Kati, Pista had 
a fight with her' 
b. *Mari-t61j Kati-val; Tibor hallotta tj, [hogy Pista 
Mari- with/Kati- from 
osszeveszett t;]. 

Again, given the properties of topicalization, the only reason why 
(29b) is excluded is that the dependencies between the topic NPs and 
their respective traces is intersecting rather than nested. This array 
of facts suggests that what we are dealing with here is a grammatical 
constraint rather than a parsing strategy. I want to suggest that this 
observation can lead to an explanation for why the BCH is suspended 
in topicalization structures. According to Stabler, the BCH captures 
the generalization that the number of identical relations within a 
given domain must be strictly limited to reduce ambiguity. In a 
sense it is necessary because the parser has a small and rigid mem- 
ory store available, which can easily be overloaded when trying to 
keep a number of identical relations separate. Given a constraint like 
nesting, this problem does not arise: the interpretation of the topical- 

Rado: Complexity limitations on parsers and grammars 385 

ized phrases with respect to the different clauses is independently 
fixed. Thus we can view the BCH as applying as last resort to relieve 
the burden placed on memory by identical relations. Topicalization 
never places such a burden on memory, thus it does not fall under 
the BCH. 

It is interesting to note that even in the case of topicalization, 
there is a preference to keep the relations as distinct as possible. 
Thus (30) below has two possible interpretations. The one that is fa- 
miliar from the discussion so far is interpreting the two preposed 
NPs as topics. It is also possible to take the second NP (Mari-tol) to be 
focused, that is, contrasted, occupying a position similar to that of 
wh-phrases ([SpecCP]). As the translations show, the latter interpre- 
tation is more preferred. 

(30) Kati-tolj Mari-tol; hallottam t;, [hogy Pista elvalt tj]. 
Kati-from/Mari-rrom/heard-1 sg/that/Pista-Nom/divorced 

preferred: 'As for Kati, it is from Mari that I heard that 

Pista divorced.' = Mari in focus 

unpreferred: 'As for Mari, I heard from her that as for Kati, 

Pista divorced her.' = Mari in topic 

(31) has the same structure as (30), the difference being that 
the case-marking on the topicalized NPs makes the interpretation 
unambiguous, even without the Nested Dependency Constraint. 
Again, both the topic-topic and the topic-focus reading are possible. 
However, here we do not find a preference for the topic-focus read- 
ing, both are equally good: 

(31) Kati-valj Mari-tol; hallottam t:, [hogy Pista osszeveszett tj]. 
Kati- with/Mari- from/heard- Isg/that/Pista-Nom/fought 
'As for Kati, it is from Mari that I heard that Pista had 

a fight with.' = Mari in focus 

or: 'As for Mari, I heard from her that as for Kati, Pista had 

a fight with her.' = Mari in topic 

Thus it seems that there is a very strong tendency to interpret sim- 
ilar relations as being as distinct as possible. This is obviously related 
to previous findings indicating that the more different the objects or 
relations, the more easily they are remembered. If we see the BCH as 
making explicit the limit on identical relations, it becomes more clear 
under which circumstances we should expect it to be lifted. 

5. Summary and implications 

In this paper 1 discussed two types of A'-constructions that are 
relevant for Stabler's Bounded Connectivity Hypothesis. Multiple wh- 
movement provided rather striking evidence for the BCH; it showed 
that a grammatical constraint, namely, an obligatory switch from 
Nominative to Accusative in long-distance subject extraction, can be 
overridden just in case it would result in a configuration that violates 
the BCH. Topicalization, on the other hand, seemed to pose a problem 
for Stabler's theory, since multiple topic phrases with the same case- 

386 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

marking are clearly allowed. It was argued, however, that the oper- 
ation of the BCH is suspended in these cases because of the existence 
of a grammatical constraint requiring that topics participate in 
nested dependencies only. As a result, topicalization structures will 
never be ambiguous, thus the BCH, whose role is to reduce ambiguity, 
does not apply. 

The discussion showed that in order to better characterize the 
application of the BCH, it is necessary to distinguish various kinds of 
A'-relations which show quite different behavior. For instance, we 
might expect to find differences based on the syntactic position oc- 
cupied by the head of the chain, or possibly on the semantic corre- 
lates of syntactic movement. Scrambling may provide interesting 
data in this domain. 

It was also proposed that the domain of the BCH might be re- 
stricted to structures that remain ambiguous after the application of 
other principles of the grammar or the parser. Further evidence was 
provided for the claim that the parser tries to assign maximally dis- 
tinct interpretations. Thus even in an unambiguous sentence like 
(30) there is a preference for topic-focus interpretation over a topic- 
topic reading which would have both the case and the function of the 
NPs identical. When the case marking is different, no such preference 

The question arises: if the Nested Dependency Constraint is part 
of the grammar of Hungarian, why is its application limited to top- 
icalization? In particular, why don't we find similar restrictions on 
wh-movement? I think the answer lies in the interpretation differ- 
ence between wh-questions and topics. Topics are interpreted as 
presupposed, already existing in the universe of discourse. In scope 
terms they are generally taken to have widest scope in the sentence. 
This property is not affected at all by assigning them an obligatory 
nested interpretation. As was mentioned in 2.1, however, the scope 
of wh-phrases in Hungarian is determined by their surface order. If 
the Nested Dependency Constraint applied to wh-phrases, that would 
restrict the possible orders wh-phrases can occur in at the beginning 
of the clause. This would in turn eliminate certain scope relations, 
severely restricting the expressive power of the language. Thus it 
appears that strategies for disambiguation become grammaticized to 
the extent that they do not interfere with the flexibility of expression 
in the language. Excessive ambiguity is then limited by constraints on 
complexity like the BCH. 


1 For reasons of perspicuity, case markers in Hungarian will be 
separated from the nouns with a hyphen and glossed as the corre- 
sponding English prepositions. 

Rado: Complexity limitations on parsers and grammars 387 

~ Wh-movement (and focusing) triggers verb movement to the 
head of the CP whose Spec is occupied by the wh-phrase, hence the 
word order difference between (3) on the one hand and (4) and (5) 
on the other. Traces left by verb movement will be ignored in the 
examples. Instead, for full comparison, I will always provide the 'un- 
transformed' sentences along with the ones showing movement. 

3 It is not surprising that two occurrences of the same relation 
yield marginal results in one case and complete unacceptability in 
the other. To the contrary, it is expected that different constructions 
will exhibit different patterns of breakdown. 

'^ It has been observed that quite often ambiguity leading to 
severe parsing difficulties can be ameliorated by making the ele- 
ments in question more dissimilar. For instance, multiple center- 
embedding structures become marginal if we vary the types of sub- 
ject NPs using proper nouns as well as pronouns, animate and 
inanimate nouns. This does not seem to be the case here: neither 
animacy nor number differences of the wh-phrases can improve the 
sentences. D-linked vs. non-d-linked wh-phrases do not appear to be 
sufficiently distinct, either. I am grateful to Andrew Barss for raising 
this issue. 

5 I am indebted to Carson Schiitze for bringing up this question. 


BRODY, Michael. 1990. Some remarks on the focus field in Hungarian. 
UCL Working Papers in Linguistics. Volume 2. 

E.KISS, Katalin. 1987. Configurationality in Hungarian. Akademiai: 

. 1992. Az egyszerij mondat szerkezete [The structure of 

clauses]. Strukturalis magyar nyelvtan [The structural grammar 
of Hungarian], ed. by F. Kiefer, Akademiai: Budapest. 

Engdahl, E. 1982. Restrictions on unbounded dependencies in 
Swedish. Readings on unbounded dependencies in Scandinavian 
languages, ed. by E. Engdahl and E. Ejerhed. Stockholm: Almquist 
and Wiksell International. 

FODOR, Janet D. 1978. Parsing strategies and constraints on trans- 
formations. Linguistic Inquiry 9:3.427-473. 

HORVATH, Julia. 1986. FOCUS in the theory of grammar and the syntax 
of Hungarian. Foris: Dordrecht. 

MaracZ, Laszlo. 1989. Asymmetries in Hungarian. Groningen Ph.D. 

Stabler, Edward S. 1994. The finite connectivity of linguistic struc- 
ture. Perspectives on sentence processing, ed. by C. E. Clifton, L. 
Frazier & K. Rayner. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum. 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 

Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Carson T. Schiitze 
Massachusetts Institute of Technology 

The analysis of Serbo-Croatian (SC) second position 
clitic placement has been the source of much controversy in 
generative linguistics. The most important point of dis- 
agreement among competing analyses has been the extent 
to which the various components of the grammar, particu- 
larly syntax and phonology, are implicated in determining 
the position of the clitics. In this paper I will show that the 
position of the clitic cluster in a clause cannot be completely 
determined by the syntax, although the syntax does have a 
crucial role to play. Rather, the position of the clitic cluster 
is subject to purely phonological constraints. 

1. Introduction 

1.1. Theoretical overview 

In this paper, 1 argue that the facts of Serbo-Croatian second po- 
sition clitic placement are best analyzed in terms of phonological 
constraints that can not only filter out syntactically valid orderings 
but also trigger a re-ordering of morphemes that does not conform to 
the syntax. More specifically, I will argue for the necessity of Hal- 
pern's (1992) proposed operation of Prosodic Inversion (PI), which 
can re-order a clitic and a potential host word in order to satisfy the 
clitic's need for a host to its left. In SC, this will allow enclitics that 
are clause-initial at S-structure to surface encliticized to the first 
prosodic word of the clause. (The particular clitics I am discussing 
are assumed to be lexically specified as ENclitic, so they never have 
the option of attaching to the right.) 

My assumptions about how PI fits into the overall structure of 
the grammar are shown diagrammatically in (1) on the next page. 

1.2 Descriptive background 

In contrast to the generally free ordering of clausal constituents, 
SC has a set of enclitics whose position in a sentence is fixed: They 
must appear in 'second position' — see (2)-(5). Clitics are boldfaced. 

(2) *Je ga dao Mariji. 

AUX it given Mary 

('He has given it to Mary.') 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

( 1 ) Prosodic Inversion in the grammar: 


=> LF 

(e.g. Extraposition?) 



Stylistic Movement 


Morphological Structure (vocabulary insertion, 

clitic cluster ordering & adjustment) 
Prosodic Projection (derive prosodic boundaries) 

Prosodic Readjustment (e.g. PI, set off heavy elements, etc.) 

Postlexical Phonology (including tonal rules) 

(3) *Ivan Marije je ga dao. 
Ivan Mary AUX it given 
('Ivan has given it to Mary.') 

(4) Fixed order of clitics in clitic cluster: 

(Oavar & Wilder 1993:9) 



















(Browne 1974) 

(5) Clitics that may occupy slots 2-4 of (4) 
a. Auxiliaries Isg 2sg 3sg Ipl 

2pl 3pl 

Future ('will'): 
Conditional ('would'): 
Past/Copula ('AUX'): 
b. Pronouns Isg 2si 

du de§ de demo dete de 

bih bi bi bismo biste bi 

sam si (je) smo ste su 

3sg-m/n 3sg-f refl Ipl 2pl 





m u 













1 m 











Traditional descriptions distinguish two sub-cases of second po- 
sition placement: following the first word of a clause ('IW') versus 
following the first constituent ('IC'). (6a) illustrates the former, with 
clitics apparently interrupting the subject NP; (6b) shows them fol- 
lowing this constituent; (6c) shows that the first constituent can be 
anything, including an adjunct. (6d and e) and (7) show an initial ad- 
verbial, separated off by a pause (denoted by T) from the rest of the 
clause. Thus, 'second position' must apparently be defined not with 
respect to the entire sentence, but with respect to some notion of el- 
ements 'internal' to the clause. 


Schiitze: Serbo-Croatian second position clitic placement 391 

(6) a. Taj mi je pesnik napisao knjigu. 

that me AUX poet written book 
'That poet wrote me a book.' 

b. Taj pesnik mi je napisao knjigu. 

c. Ove godine mi je taj pesnik napisao knjigu. 
this year 

'That poet wrote me a book this year.' 

d. Ove godine I taj mi je pesnik napisao knjigu. 

e. Ove godine I taj pesnik mi je napisao knjigu. 

(Browne 1974:41) 

(7) a. Nocu je ovdje mirnije. 

at-night AUX here more-quiet 
'At night it is more quiet here.' 

b. *No(5ulje ovdje mirnije. 

c. Nocfu I ovdje je mirnije. (Radanovic'-Kocic 1988:106) 

Examples (8), (9) and (10) further illustrate the IW/IC alternation. 

(8) a. Moja mladja sestra de doci u utorak. 

my younger sister will come on Tuesday 
'My younger sister will come on Tuesday.' 
b. Moja de mladja sestra doci u utorak. 

(9) a. Sovjetske goste je primio i predsjednik 

Soviet guests AUX received also president / 

Republike Austrije Jonas, 
republic Austria Jonas 

'The President of the Republic of Austria, Mr. Jonas, also 
received the Soviet guests.' 
b. Sovjetske je goste primio i predsjednik Republike Austrije 

(10) a. ProSle godine su otvorili ugostiteljsku Skolu. 

last year AUX open hotel-and-catering school 

'Last year they opened a hotel-and-catering school.' 
b. Pro^le su godine otvorili ugostiteljsku i^kolu. 

(Browne 1975:113-114) 

Considering now the IW option in more detail, it turns out that 
not just any word can precede clitics sentence-initially: Most prepo- 
sitions cannot (lib), nor can the verbal negation marker (12b) nor 
certain conjunctions (13b). 

(11) a. Na sto ga ostavi. 

on table it leave 
'Leave it on the table.' 
b. *Na ga sto ostavi. (Progovac 1993:4) 

(12) a. Ne vidim ih. 

not see them 
'I don't see them.' 
b. *Ne ih vidim. (Browne 1975:112) 

392 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(13) a. ...i ne gledaju me. 
and not look me 

'...and don't look at me.' 
b. *...i me ne gledaju. (Browne 1975:113) 

The relevant generalization seems to be that the host element to the 
left of the clitics must be a prosodic word, rather than just any syn- 
tactic terminal. By prosodic word (PWd) is meant a phonologically 
independent word, i.e. not a clitic; the set of prosodic words is often 
characterized by the ability to bear accent, although this latter crite- 
rion is highly problematic. There is independent evidence that most 
prepositions in SC are proclitics, as is ne, and most likely / as well. 
Proclitic and enclitic cannot combine to form a prosodic word. Thus 
the explanation for the clitic as the fourth syntactic element in (13a), 
is that / and ne are both proclitic on gledaju, the first PWd in the 
clause, and me is in IW position because it is enclitic on that PWd. 

In section 2 I will summarize accounts of SC clitic placement that 
claim that only syntax is involved, and point out where I differ from 
them. In section 3 I describe the type of syntactico-phonological ac- 
count I wish to argue for. I then describe four constructions that I 
claim require prosodic constraints and cannot be accounted for by 
syntax alone. Finally, section 8 presents conclusions. 

2. Purely syntactic accounts 

By a pure syntax account of SC clitic placement I mean an ac- 
count under which the syntax is fully responsible for the linear posi- 
tion of clitics in the sentence string; i.e., clitics do not move in the 

The most detailed pure syntax accounts I have seen are those of 
Progovac (1993, 1994; Franks & Progovac 1994) and Cavar and 
Wilder (1992, 1993; Wilder & Cavar 1993); see also Roberts 1994. I 
adopt essentially their syntactic assumptions. (14) on the next page 
shows the schematic structure for the top of SC clauses that I will 
assume for concreteness in the rest of this paper (order among 
adjoined elements may be free): 

I assume clitics are always in Comp at S-structure {pace Bo§kovic5 
1994), so that phrases that move to Spec-CP or heads that move to C^ 
are potential hosts for the clitics. 

The aforementioned authors' explanation for the IW/IC alter- 
nations like (15) is based on noticing that in most of these cases, one 
can show independently that the first word is extractable and ques- 
tionable independent of the presence of clitics, as in (16) and (17). 

(15) a. [Anina drugarica] mu nudi Cokoladu. 
Ana's girl-friend him offers chocolate 
'Ana's friend is offering him chocolate.' 
b. [Anina] mu drugarica nudi Cokoladu. 



Schiitze: Serbo-Croatian second position clitic placement 









heavy [ XP 

argument I adjunct, 

I topic or C 

I w h -phrase clitics 

I adverbial 

I adjunct 




I H/i-phrase ^ ^*^ 


I scrambled ^^^ • 

I argument NP I' 

I subject 

[ obligatory I-phrase boundary 

(16) Anina dolazi sestra. 
Ana's comes sister 
'Ana's sister is coming.' 

(17) Cija dolazi sestra? 
whose comes sister 

'Whose sister is coming?' (Progovac 1993:3) 

Thus, the claim is that whatever is responsible for the word order in 
(16) is also responsible for IW clitics intervening in the NP in (15b): 
Presumably, Anina has extracted from the subject NP and fronted. I 
accept this extraction account for the cases they discuss, but I argue 
that there are instances of IW placement that cannot be analyzed in 
this way. They claim that some element must always move to Spec- 
CP or to Comp in the syntax when clitics are present, but I claim it is 
possible for neither movement to happen, since I believe that clitics 
can lack a host at S-structure. 

3. Syntactic/phonological accounts 

By a mixed syntactic/phonological account of SC clitic placement 
1 mean one under which both syntax and phonology play an active 
role in the eventual linear position of clitics. 

Halpern (1992) proposes a mixed account (refined by Percus 
1993) that forms the basis of my own. His fundamental claim is this: 
Phonology can move clitics if and only if their prosodic requirements 
are not satisfied, and it can move them only the minimal distance 
necessary to satisfy those requirements (cf. Sproat 1988, Marantz 
1989, Sadock 1991, Percus 1993, and others). 

Halpern's particular construal is that PI is a last-resort option for 
saving otherwise ill-formed structures; i.e., 'The surface order of two 

394 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2(1 994) 

lexical items reflects the order established by the syntax unless this 
would lead to an ill-formed surface (prosodic) representation' (p. 23). 
'Its scope is limited to affecting adjacent elements, and its application 
makes reference only to prosodic constituency' (p. 2). These restric- 
tions need not be stated on an explicit rule, but rather are general 
properties of the phonology. He provides the following formulation of 
clitic attachment, which I adopt verbatim (cd represents a phonologi- 
cal word): 

(18) Prosodic adjunction of clitics: For a DCL [directional clitic], X, 
which must attach to a w to its left (respectively right), 

a. if there is a co, Y, comprised of material which is syntacti- 
cally immediately to the left (right) of X, then adjoin X to the 
right (left) of Y. 

b. else attach X to the right (left) edge of the co composed of 
syntactic material immediately to its right (left). (Halpern 

(19) Sample applications of rule (18): 

S-structure PF 

a. [Aninajo, [drugaricajo, mu => [Aninajft, [[drugaricajoj mujo, 
Ana's girl-friend him 

b. Mu [Anina]ft, [drugaricaJo, => [[AninaJo) muj^u [drugarica]^;; 
(Prosodic Inversion) 

His explanation for cases like (6d and e) where clitics are later 
than absolute second position is as follows: 'A constituent which is 
stylistically fronted is separated from the rest of a clause by a (large) 
prosodic boundary — that is, the fronted constituent is in a separate 
intonational phrase' (p. 91), the left edge of CP in (14); 'A clitic must 
be contained in the same intonational phrase as its host' (p. 152- 
153). The latter is a constraint on the prosodic adjunction rule (18), 
blocking clause (a) of it in some cases, thus triggering clause (b). 

An immediate consequence is that any clitic placement that is 
not derivable purely in syntactic terms must involve rightward 
movement over exactly one prosodic word in the phonology. 1 will 
now argue that Prosodic Inversion and the proposed constraints on 
cliticization are crucially required in a full analysis of SC clitic place- 

4. First argument: complex modifiers 

The form of the first argument is simple: The claim is that there 
are certain clitic placements that are not derivable by the syntax at 
all, because the string preceding the clitics cannot undergo syntactic 
movement, but these placements are derivable by phonological 
movement, since they involve clitics being exactly one PWd from the 
beginning of a clause. 

The crucial constructions involve sentence-initial PPs that con- 
tain prenominal modifiers in the NP object of P, where the preposi- 
tion is a proclitic, as in (20) and (21). 

Schiitze: Serbo-Croatian second position clitic placement 395 

(20) U veliku je Jovan u§ao sobu. 
in big AUX Jovan entered room 
'Jovan entered (the) big room.' 

(21) U ovoj je sobi klavir. 
in this AUX room piano 

'In this room is the piano.' (Percus 1993:2) 

If PI is truly part of SC grammar, then we expect to find clitics fol- 
lowing the first modifier, since it forms a single PWd together with 
the procliticized preposition, and this is indeed what we find. The 
question is whether there is an alternative, pure syntax account of 
this clitic placement. 

Now it is certainly true that prepositional phrases in SC can be 
interrupted by other material, as in (22). 

(22) U veliku Jovan ulazi sobu. 
in big Jovan enters room 

'Jovan enters (the) big room.' (Percus 1993:2) 

Thus, independently of the clitic facts we need a syntactic way to de- 
rive this sentence, i.e. to split u veliku from sobu. There are in prin- 
ciple two ways of doing this: either by fronting the non-constituent u 
veliku and stranding sobu, or by extracting sobu, leaving u veliku. 
The latter gains empirical support from the fact that head nouns can 
be independently shown to extract from their NPs: 

(23) Studentkinje dodjo§e sve njegove. 
students came all his 

'All of his students came.' (MiSeska Tomic 1993:52) 

(24) Izuzetno veliku je Jovan uCinio uslugu Petru. 
extremely big AUX Jovan did favour to. Peter 

(Zeljko Boi^kovic^: p. c.) 

Thus, if all we had were sentences like (20) and (21), there would be 
at least one palatable syntactic approach to derive the clitic place- 
ment. However, NPs can have multiple modifiers preceding the head 
noun, and when they do, we find a contrast between clitics and other 
material regarding where the PP can be split. Specifically, clitics can 
always appear after the first modifier ((20), (21). (25), (26)), that is, 
after the first PWd, but nonclitics can only appear after the last mod- 
ifier, that is, immediately preceding the head noun ((20) and (27a) 
versus (27b and c)). 

(25) U ovu je veliku sobu Jovan u§ao. 

in this AUX big room Jovan entered 

'Jovan entered this big room.' 

(26) a. U velikoj je sobi klavir. 

in big AUX room piano 

'In the big room is the piano.' 
b. U ovoj je velikoj sobi klavir. 
in this 

396 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(27) a. ??U ovu veliku Jovan ulazi sobu. 

in this big Jovan enters room 

b. *U ovu Jovan ulazi veliku sobu. 

c. ???U ovu Jovan veliku ulazi sobu. 

(Zeljko BoSkovicf: p.c; Ljiljana Progovac: p.c.) 

Under a theory that includes PI, this is exactly what we expect: 
PI can move clitics to their position following the first PWd when 
they would otherwise lack a host sentence-initially, but any other in- 
terruption of a PP must be syntactically derived, and the only way 
the syntax can split a PP is by extracting the head noun. Thus, the 
prosodic movement account is strongly supported. 

In contrast, I claim there is no reasonable analysis of these facts 
under a pure syntax approach. Given that clitics contrast with non- 
clitics in their placement options, a pure syntax approach must posit 
two different kinds of syntactic movement for the two cases and ex- 
plain why they correlate with different kinds of intervening mate- 
rial. In particular, it is necessary to block nonclitics after an ex- 
traction that moves a P+modifier sequence to the left. Getting this 
contrast requires an arbitrary stipulation under any pure syntax ac- 
count of the PP paradigm, because of the basic descriptive fact that 
clitics go where nothing else can: To accomplish this in syntax re- 
quires a type of movement for which there can in principle be no 
independent motivation. 

Note that one could not even say that it is the first subcon- 
stituent of the NP that can move, taking the preposition along by 
some sort of prosodic 'pied piping.' It is really only the first word 
that can split off: An Adjective Phrase containing an adjective and a 
modifier cannot host clitics when more modifiers follow it (28b); 
again (28a) involves noun extraction: 

(28) a. U izuzetno veliku je Jovan u§ao sobu. 

in extremely big AUX Jovan entered room 

b. *U izuzetno veliku je Jovan u§ao praznu sobu. 

in extremely big AUX Jovan entered empty room 

(Zeljko Bo§kovic: p. c.) 

This makes the process look even less syntactic: Why should a modi- 
fied adjective have different extraction properties than an unmodi- 
fied one? 

Another such paradigm involves a modified adjective phrase by 
itself: (29a vs. b) shows that only clitics can intervene between the 
adverb and the adjective, which is expected if vrlo cannot extract. If 
it is replaced with a w^-word that CAN extract (29c and d), other 
material can more easily intervene. 

(29) a. Vrlo je visoka Bojanova sestra. 

very AUX tall Bojan's sister 

'Bojan's sister is very tall.' 

Schiitze: Serbo-Croatian second position clitic placement 397 

b. ???Vrlo je Bojanova sestra visoka. 

c. ??Koliko je Bojanova sestra visoka? 

how. much 

d. ??Koliko tvrdis da je Bojanova sestra visoka? 
how. much claim that AUX Bojan's sister tall 

'How tall do you claim that Bojan's sister is?' (Bos^kovic: p. c.) 

5. Second argument: predicate phrases 

Predicative constructions have been claimed to disallow IC 
placement and require IW placement: 

(30) a. Jako mi je dosadna njegova posljednja knjiga. 

very me AUX boring his last book 

'His last book is very boring (to me).' 
b. *Jako dosadna mi je njegova posljednja knjiga. 

(Browne 1975:118) 

Why should multi-word copular predicate phrases not be able to be 
followed by clitics? Under my theory, we have to say that the adjec- 
tive phrase in (30) cannot front ahead of the clitics in the syntax; in 
particular, it cannot front to Spec-CP. If the Adjective Phrase always 
follows the clitics syntactically, the ungrammaticality of (30b) would 
be explained, because the clitics would have to move in the phonol- 
ogy, and I have claimed that they never move more than one PWd in 
the phonology. Fronting the predicate phrase to Spec-CP might be 
blocked because it has to incorporate into the copula at LF, or be- 
cause the predicate is typically new information, and thus incompat- 
ible with Topic position, which houses given information. A pure syn- 
tax account would be hard-pressed to explain why PART of a copular 
predicate can front but the whole predicate cannot. 

6. Third argument: 'fortresses' 

It has been known at least since the work of Browne (1974, 
1975) that some IW placements are not as good as others. Specifi- 
cally, there is a class of NPs that seem to resist IW clitic placement 
within them when clause-initial; we need to explain this. I annotate 
such sentences with '%*', and use Halpern's name 'fortresses' (they 
resist invasion by clitics). 

The set of fortress NPs can be catalogued as follows: multi-word 

proper names (31), conjoined NPs (32), post-head genitives (33), and 

post-head PPs (34). In all cases, the variant with the clitic following 
the entire initial NP is fine. 

(31) %*Lav je Tolstoj veliki ruski pisac. 

Leo AUX Tolstoy great Russian writer 
'Leo Tolstoy is a great Russian writer.' 

(32) %*Sestra <5e i njen mu?. doci u utorak. 

sister will and her husband come in Tuesday 
'My sister and her husband will come on Tuesday.' 

398 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

(33) %*Prijatelji su moje sestre upravo stigli. 

friends have my-GEN sister-GEN just arrived 

'My sister's friends have just arrived.' 

(Halpern 1992:94-95) 

(34) %*Studenti su iz Beograda upravo zaspali. 

students AUX from Beograd just fallen. asleep 

'Students from Beograd have just fallen asleep.' 

(BoSkovid: p. c.) 

Progovac (1993) suggests a pure syntax account of these con- 
structions. Under such an account, clitics can only appear within an 
NP if the part that precedes them is syntactically extractable. Thus, 
she claims this fails to be the case in (31)-(34): At least according to 
her intuitions, none of these elements independently allows extrac- 
tion. The data for one of the fortress types is given in (35). 

(35) a. [Roditelji uspeSnih studenata] su se razisli. 

parents successful-GEN students-GEN AUX REEL dispersed 
'The parents of the successful students dispersed.' 

b. %*Roditelji su se uspe^nih studenata raziSli. 

c. ?*Roditelji su se razi§li uspe§nih studenata. 

d. *Ko su se uspeSnih studenata razi§li? 

who (Progovac 1993:5-6) 

For speakers for whom some of (31)-(34) are fine, the corresponding 
extractions are also fine. 

Syntactic inextractability is insufficient under a mixed syntax- 
phonology approach like my own, however, since PI should be able 
to put clitics in these places even if no syntactic separation is possi- 
ble. Therefore, Halpern attempts to account for the degraded nature 
of these sentences prosodically. I propose a modification of his idea 
that PI is constrained not to cross a phonological-phrase boundary. 
To get the relevant contrasts, I posit that the left edge of the N head 
of an NP initiates a phonological phrase. In the fortress examples, a 
clitic that originates in Comp, to the left of these NPs at S-structure, 
would then be outside the relevant phonological-phrase after pro- 
sodic mapping, and PI would require it to cross that phrase edge if it 
were to invert with and cliticize to the noun. In contrast, a good case 
of first word placement has the phonological-phrase boundary later, 
so PI can apply without crossing it. 

To the extent that we can find a natural prosodic constraint on 
PI, this supports the mixed approach to clitic placement if an alter- 
native syntactic constraint would be unappealing or unstatable. One 
intriguing fact that supports this reasoning is the following, noted by 
Percus (1993): Postnominal PP fortresses become better when the PP 
portion is made heavier — compare (36) with (34) above. 

Schutze: Serbo-Croatian second position clitic placement 399 

(36) Student! su iz prelepog grada na moru upravo 
students AUX from beautiful town on sea just 

fallen. asleep 

'The students from the beautiful town by the sea have 

already fallen asleep.' (Boskovid: p. c.) 

Percus claims that the length of the PP forces a phrasal stress to be 
placed on studenti that is not required in (34), perhaps a sign that 
studenti is phrased separately from the PP in (35) but not in (34), an 
idea that is corroborated by the fact that (34) improves if a pause is 
inserted after studenti. Maybe the first noun likes to phrase with 
following material, but cannot do so if that material is set off due to 
heaviness. This in turn could be because phonological phrases prefer 
to be binary branching (Dresher 1994). Whatever the explanation, 
the fact that the crucial contrasts involve presumably identical syn- 
tactic structures that differ only in heaviness or pause strongly sup- 
ports the idea that the constraint must be a prosodically-based one. 

7. Fourth argument: embedded clauses 

My final argument against a purely syntactic approach to clitic 
placement comes from an asymmetry between matrix and comple- 
ment clauses with respect to possible clitic placements, exemplified 
in (37): 

(37) a. U ovoj sobi je Markova zena sretna. 

in this room AUX Marko's wife happy 
'In this room Marko's wife is happy.' 

b. *Ja mislim da u ovoj sobi je Markova zena sretna. 

1 think that in this room AUX Marko's wife happy 
'1 think that in this room Marko's wife is happy.' 

(Percus 1993:16-17) 

It is not simply that embedded topicalization is impossible: (38) 
shows valid clitic placements involving the same constituent order: 

(38) a. Ja mislim da je u ovoj sobi Markova iena sretna. 

I think that AUX in this room Marko's wife happy 
b. Ja mislim da u ovoj sobi I Markova je zena sretna. 

c. ?Ja mislim da u ovoj sobi I Markova zena je sretna. 

(Percus 1993:7) 

Once again, it is hard to imagine how syntax alone could make 
the relevant contrast, since (38b and c) show that more than one 
prosodic word can front ahead of the clitic position. In contrast, 1 be- 
lieve that phonology potentially can, though the details are spec- 
ulative. Again purely for concreteness, assume the structure of com- 
plement clauses involves CP-recursion, as in (39). (Cf. Authier 1992.) 



Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 










heavy [ 

argument I 





adjunct or 
topic C 


[ potential I-phrase boundary 

Then the clitic and pause placements in (38) are explained: In 
(38a), nothing has been fronted between higher and lower Comps, so 
clitics can attach to da. In (38b and c), the PP has adjoined to the 
lower CP, to be followed by an intonation-phrase boundary as shown 
in (39), and a constituent in the lowest Spec-CP hosts the clitics. As 
for the contrast in (37), note that the (b) sentence IS generable by 
the syntax, with the embedded clause looking identical to the (a) 
sentence. I claim that the difference is one of phonological phrasing: 
In (37b), the PP forms an intonation phrase with the matrix verb and 
the complementizer, and the clitics cannot attach outside their I- 
phrase, as Halpern suggests: 

(40) *[Ja mislim da u ovoj sobiji [je Markova zena sretnaJi 

whereas in (37a) the initial PP need not form an I-phrase on its own. 
The phrasing in (40) might be forced because cross-linguistically, 
verbs prefer to phrase with their complements whenever possible, a 
requirement that here conflicts with the principle that each clause 
wants to be in a separate I-phrase. Note that the same pattern does 
NOT hold in adjunct clauses, though there might be other reasons for 

(41) a. 


(42) a. 

Raduj se [jer ti je do§ao brat.] 

rejoice / REFL / because / you / AUX / come / brother 

'Rejoice because your brother has come.' 

Raduj se [jer brat ti je doSao.] (Radanovid-Kocid 1988:101) 

Mi smo ustali ali Petrova zena je vec 

we / AUX / tired / but / Peter's / wife / AUX / already / 



Mi smo ustali ali Petrova je zena ved otiSla. 

Mi smo ustali alije Petrova zena ved oti§la. 

(Percus 1993:21) 

Schiitze: Serbo-Croatian second position clitic placement 401 

8. Conclusions 

In conclusion, Halpern's (1992) framework for the treatment of 
clitic placement receives considerable support. 1 have shown that his 
proposals can be extended to cover a substantially wider range of 
facts in SC than he or others have discussed. The notion that clitics 
can be reordered with respect to an adjacent word in the way pro- 
posed by Halpern is key to understanding constraints on clitic place- 
ment. We have seen considerable evidence that this is a phonological 
process that has its own constraints. Serbo-Croatian second position 
clitic placement evidently involves sometimes opaque interactions 
among several modules of the grammar. In this paper I have striven 
to clarify the role that the phonology plays in this system. 


AUTHIER, Marc. 1992. Iterated CPs and embedded topicalization. Lin- 
guistic Inquiry 23:2.326-336. 

BOSKOVIC, Zeljko. 1994. V-movement in Serbo-Croatian and related is- 
sues. Paper presented at the 3rd Annual Workshop on Formal 
Approaches to Slavic Linguistics, University of Maryland, College 

Browne, Wayles. 1974. On the problem of enclitic placement in 
Serbo-Croatian. Slavic transformational syntax, Michigan Slavic 
Materials 10, ed. by Richard D. Brecht and Catherine V. Chvany, 
36-52. Ann Arbor: Department of Slavic Languages and Litera- 
tures, University of Michigan. 

. 1975. Serbo-Croatian enclitics for English-speaking learners. 

Contrastive analysis of English and Serbo-Croatian. Volume One, 
ed. by Rudolph Filipovic, 105-134. Zagreb: Institute of Linguis- 
tics, Faculty of Philosophy, University of Zagreb, Yugoslavia. 

Cavar, Damir, & Chris Wilder. 1992. Long head movement? Verb- 
movement and cliticization in Croatian. Sprachwissenschaft in 
Frankfurt Arbeitspapier 7, Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Universitat 
Frankfurt a.M., Institut fiir Deutsche Sprache und Literatur II. 
[To appear in Lingua, 1994.J 

. 1993. Verbal and pronominal clitics in Croatian. Paper pre- 
sented at the Geneva Workshop on the Wackernagel Position. 

FlLIPOVlt, Rudolf (Ed.). 1975. Contrastive analysis of English and 
Serbo-Croatian. Volume One. Zagreb: Institute of Linguistics, 
Faculty of Philosophy, University of Zagreb, Yugoslavia. 

Franks, S., & L. Progovac. 1994. On the placement of Serbo-Croatian 
clitics. Paper presented at the 9th Biennial Conference on Balkan 
and South Slavic, Indiana University, Bloomington. 

Halpern, Aaron Lars. 1992. Topics in the placement and morphology 
of clitics. Stanford Ph.D. dissertation. 

Hock, Hans Henrich. 1992. What's a nice word like you doing in a 
place like this? Syntax vs. phonological form. Studies in the Lin- 
guistic Sciences 22:1.39-87. 

402 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

. 1993. Who's on first? Syntactic vs. prosodic accounts for the PI 

of P2 clitics. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, MS. 

Marantz, Alec. 1989. Clitics and phrase structure. Alternative con- 
ceptions of phrase structure, ed. by Mark R. Baltin & Anthony S. 
Kroch, 99-116. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 

MiSeska TOMid, Olga. 1993. Slavic versus Balkan: An analysis of the 
Balkan Slavic major clitic clusters. University of Novi Sad, Yu- 
goslavia, MS. 

PERCUS, Orin. 1993. The captious clitic: Problems in Serbo-Croatian 
clitic placement. MIT phonology generals paper. 

PROGOVAC, Ljiljana. 1993. Clitics in Serbian/Croatian: Comp as the sec- 
ond position. Wayne State University, MS. 

. 1994. Clitics in Serbian/Croatian: Deriving the second position. 

Paper presented at the LSA, Boston. 

RADANOVl(^-KOCld, Vesna. 1988. The grammar of Serbo-Croatian clitics: 
A synchronic and diachronic perspective. University of Illinois at 
Urbana-Champaign Ph.D. dissertation. 

1993. On the placement of Serbo-Croatian clitics. University of 

Illinois, MS. Paper presented at the workshop on second-position 
clitics, Ohio State University. 

Roberts, Ian. 1994. Second position effects and agreement in Comp. 
University of Wales/University of Maryland, MS. 

Sadock, J. M. 1991. Autolexical syntax. Chicago: University of Chicago 

SCHUTZE, Carson T. 1993. The prosodic structure of Serbo-Croatian 
function words: A critique of Selkirk 1993. MIT, MS. 

1994. Serbo-Croatian second position clitic placement and the 

phonology-syntax interface. To appear in MIT Working Papers in 
Linguistics 21, ed. by Andrew Carnie, Heidi Harley & Tony Bures. 

Selkirk, Elisabeth. 1993. The prosodic structure of function words. 
University of Massachusetts at Amherst, MS. 

SPROAT, Richard. 1988. Bracketing paradoxes, cliticization and other 
topics: The mapping between syntactic and phonological struc- 
ture. Morphology and modularity. Publications in Language Sci- 
ences 29, ed. by M. Everaert et al., 339-360. Dordrecht: Foris. 

Wilder, Chris & Damir Cavar. 1993. Word order variation, verb 
movement, and economy principles. Sprachwissenschaft in 
Frankfurt Arbeitspapier 10, Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Universitiit 
Frankfurt a.M., Institut fiir Deutsche Sprache und Literatur II. 
[To appear in Studia Linguistica, 1994.] 

Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Kuo-ming Sung 
University of California, Los Angeles 

In this paper I will examine the so-called partitive 
constructions from two language groups, namely Romance 
and some Asian languages. The two groups share similar 
properties in partitive constructions in terms of the Defi- 
niteness Effect but differ dramatically regarding the landing 
site of NP: Only the Chinese-type allows NP to move into a 
Case position. It will be shown that the classifier, obliga- 
torily required in a Chinese-type of QP, incorporates into Q 
and absorbs Case, which accounts for the landing site differ- 
ence. The analysis also offers a possible account for the past 
participle agreement facts among Romance languages. 

1 . Partitive constructions 

The partitive construction I am concerned with in this paper 
refers specifically to those constructions where an NP is extracted 
from a QP thus leaving a stranded quantifier, which receives a 
'partitive' interpretation. These cases are common in Romance such 
as French, Italian, Catalan, etc. East Asian Languages including Chi- 
nese, Japanese, and Korean do not have the Romance partitive clitic 
en/ne, but instead have numeral-classifier stranding phenomena 
that show similar syntactic properties. 

French partitive constructions usually consists of a clitic en, ap- 
pearing in Infl and a stranded quantifier (numeral, beaucoup 'many', 
and the like). Similar to the Italian ne cliticization discussed in Rizzi 
1982, en represents only NPs generated from the object position and 
never from the subject position. The transitivity of the verb, 
however, does not seem to matter. Consider the examples in (1) and 

(1) a. J'ai lu un des livres de Zola. 

'I. have read one of the books by Zola.' 
b. J'en ai lu un. 

'l.of-them have read one.' 

(2) a. Trois hommes sont arrives. 

three men are arrived 

b. 11 est arrive trois hommes. 
there is arrived three men 

c. II en est arrive trois. 
there of-them is arrived three 

(1) contains a transitive verb lire 'read' and (2) an unaccusative verb 
arriver 'arrive'. Both object NPs can cliticize as en, leaving the 


404 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

numeral quantifier trois 'three' stranded. (2b) and (2c) resembles the 
English there construction, with the internal argument of the 
unaccusative verb staying in situ and the subject position filled with 
the lexical expletive //. This provides an interesting issue with 
regards to Case Theory because an unaccusative verb cannot assign 
Case to its internal argument while in (2b) and (2c) the internal 
argument appears to escape the NP Filter, or Case checking in a more 
recent term. 

Like unaccusative verbs, impersonal passives can also leave the 
internal argument in situ as in (3b) or have a stranded numeral 
quantifier in the object position when en cliticizes as in (3c). 

(3) a. Trois filles ont ete tuees. 

three girls (are) been killed 

b. II a ete tue trois filles. 
there has been killed three girls 

c. II en a ete tue trois. 
there of-them has. been killed three 

Sportiche 1991 points out that other impersonal constructions exhibit 
the same properties: the internal argument stays behind the verb 
even though the verb does not have a Case to assign. 

(4) a. II s'est construit trois maisons. 

there se is built three houses 

b. II a conduit des femmes. 

there has driven women 

Chinese does not have the equivalent of the French en (to be 
more precise, Chinese lacks the entire system of clitics) but the fol- 
lowing sentences deliver the same partitive interpretation as does 

(5) a. Lai le san ge keren. 

come-asp three CL guest 
'There came three guests.' 
b. Keren lai le san ge. 
guest come-asp three CL 

(5a) involves an unaccusative verb lai 'come', the internal argument 
can stay in situ like its French counterpart. (5b) is the result of NP 
extraction out of QP, the NP keren 'guests' moves to the subject posi- 
tion and leaves the numeral-classifier sequence stranded. This again d 
resembles the en cliticization with regards to the stranded quantifier. ■ 
A more careful comparison between (5b) and the French example j 
(2c) reveals one striking difference: In Chinese, the landing site of i 
the extracted NP moves to the subject position, presumably receiving 
Case there. Moving the extracted noun to the subject, or any Case po- 
sition, in French would give very bad results, as attempted in (6): 

(6) a. *(Des) hommes sont arrives trois. 

men are arrived three 

Sung: A typological study of NP extraction from QP 405 

b. *(Des) hommes ont ete tues trois. 

men have been killed three 

c. *(Des) maisons se (en) ont ete construites. 

houses se (of-them) have been built 

Contrary to French, Chinese seems to systematically allow an ex- 
tracted NP to land in a Case position and leave behind a numeral- 
classifier, as demonstrated by the BA and BEI structures given in (7) 
and (8). 

(7) a. Wo mai diao le san zhang Liside youpiao. 

I sell-out-asp three CL Lisi's stamps 

'I sold three of Lisi's stamps.' 
b. Liside youpiao bei wo mai diao le san zhang. 
Lisi's stamp BEI I sell-out-asp three CL 
'Three of Lisi's stamps were sold by me.' 

(8) a. Wo mai diao le san zhang Liside youpiao. 

I sell-off-asp three CL Lisi's stamp 
'I sold three of Lisi's stamps.' 
b. Wo ba Liside youpiao mai diao le san zhang. 
I BA Lisi's stamp sell-off-asp three CL 
'I sold three of Lisi's stamps.' 

The null hypothesis for BEI structure is that the process is exactly 
like that of English passive. Therefore, it is reasonable to assume that 
the extracted NP moves to the subject position in (7b). Chinese lin- 
guists have very different ideas about BA. But there is one unan- 
imous consensus, which is that the NP appearing with BA is Case 
marked by BA. We can safely assume that the extracted NP moves 
into a Case position in (8b). 

One reason to put Chinese examples given above on the same 
line with the French partitive constructions, besides the partitive 
interpretation, is that DE is observed in both languages. The DE, in the 
partitive context, describes the phenomenon that when the numeral 
quantifier is contained in a DP, the extraction of NP is not permitted. 
All four impersonal constructions we discussed earlier become un- 
grammatical when the quantifier is preceded by a determiner. 

(9) a. *I1 en est arrive les trois. (des hommes) 

there of-them is arrived the three. 

b. *11 en a ete tue les trois. (des hommes) 

there of-thcm has been killed the three. 

c. *I1 s'en est construit les trois. (des maison) 

there se of-them is built the three. 

d. *11 en a conduit les trois. (des femmes) 

there of-them has driven the three 

The impossibility of en cliticization, (i.e. extraction out of DP) is 
supposedly related to some change that takes place in the comple- 
ment position. (10) shows that the internal argument cannot stay in 

406 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

situ any more, when it is definite. Chinese partitive constructions also 
exhibit DE, as shown in (11). 

(10) a. *I1 est arrive rhomme. 

there is arrived the men 

b. *I1 a ete tue les trois hommes. 

there has been killed the three men 

c. *I1 s'est construit les maisons. 

there se is built the houses 

d. *I1 a conduit les femmes. 

there has driven the women 

(11) a. *Lai le na san ge keren. 

come-asp those three CL guest 
There came those three guests.' 

b. *Liside youpiao bei wo mai diao le na san zhang. 

Lisi's stamp BEI I sell-out-asp those three CL 
'Those three of Lisi's stamps were sold by me.' 

c. *Wo ba Liside youpiao mai diao le na san zhang. 

I BA Lisi's stamp sell-off-asp those three CL 
'I sold those three of Lisi's stamps.' 

To summarize, Chinese and French both have partitive construction 
with the form of an extracted element (clitic in French, NP in Chi- 
nese) and a stranded numeral quantifier. Both languages exhibit DE 
in partitive construction. However, one crucial difference must be ob- 
served: the landing site of the extracted element must be a Caseless 
position in French but a Case position in Chinese. The contrast in 
landing site between Chinese and French, I would like to point out, 
can be extended to that between East Asian languages and Romance 
languages. For example, the Japanese paradigm in (12) clearly shows 

(12) a. (Sono) san-nin-no gakusei-ga kita. 

(those) three-CL-gen student-Nom come-past 
'Three students came.' 

b. Gakusei-ga san-nin ki-ta. 
student-Nom three-CL come-past. 

c. *Gakusei-ga sono san-nin ki-ta. 

student-Nom those three-CL come-past. 
'Those three students came.' 

2 . Syntactic properties of classifiers 

In this section I examine the syntactic and morphological prop- 
erties of classifiers in Chinese and Japanese and concludes that they 
are in many ways comparable to Romance clitics, including its ability 
to absorb Case. It is based on this comparison and the partitive Case 
developed in Belletti 1988 and Lasnik 1992 that I propose an 
classifier incorporation analysis to account for the landing site differ- 
ence between Romance and East Asian Languages. Kayne 1987 and 

Sung: A typological study of NP extraction from QP 407 

Sportiche 1991 points out that Romance clitics have the following 
properties: (Sportiche 1991:51) 

(13) a. a clitic is one word long 

b. a clitic never bears stress 

c. a clitic cannot be coordinated 

d. Nothing can intervene between a clitic and its host (except 
other clitics). 

e. No syntactic process (movement, deletion... ) can affect the 
host without affecting the clitic as well. 

Following Sportiche 1991, I assume that clitics are heads adjoined to 
their hosts. Almost identical properties are found in Chinese clas- 

(14) a. a classifier is one word long, cannot be modified at a 

syntactic level 

b. a classifier cannot be used 

c. a classifier cannot be coordinated 

d. Nothing intervenes between a classifier and its host (except 
a limited number of adjectives that form a disyllabic 
compound with it) 

e. No syntactic process (movement, deletion... ) can affect the 
host without affecting the classifier as well. 

Examples that demonstrate the points in (14) are given below in 

(15) a. *san hen da de ben shu 

three very big-DE Q^ book 
'three big volumes of books' 

b. *san ben he tao shu 

'three volumes and sets of books' 

c. A- Ni mai le san ben haishi *(san) tao shu? 

'Did you buy three volumes or sets of books?' 
B-*(san) ben. 

d. *zhe wode ben shu / *san wode ben shu / etc. 

'this my book / three my books / etc. 

e. *ben shu wo mai le san. 

'books I bought three' (topicalization) 

(15a) shows that classifiers cannot be modified by adjectives. They 
cannot be coordinated either, as shown in (15b). (15c) describes the 
fact that they cannot be used contrastively, even stressed. The un- 
grammatical (15d) shows that the subject wo T cannot appear be- 
tween a determiner or a numeral and a classifier. Were it the case 
that a classifier is only a phonological enclitic and never moves in the 
syntax, we would expect that (15d) to be acceptable with the clas- 
sifier cliticized onto wode 'my' at PP. But that is not possible. Finally, 
(15e) shows that movements such as topicalization cannot separate 
the classifier from its host, the numeral. 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

That immediately raises the question of its location. Abney 1987 
proposes the following structure for English noun phrases, also 
known as the DP hypothesis. 







measure phrase N' 


The structure of (16) will render the correct word order for Chi- 
nese noun phrases. Considering the 'agreement' between the head 
noun and the classifier, it is not implausible to extend Abney's 
proposal to Chinese, which will naturally capture the 'agreement' be- 
tween a classifier and a noun through the spec-head relation in such 
a structure. A closer look into the Chinese noun phrases, however, 
will reveal a potential problem for adopting (16) into Chinese, which 
is the fact that the specifier position of a head noun must be avail- 
able for another NP, as shown below in (17), 

(17) a. san-ben Zhangsan-de shu 
three-CL Zhangsan-poss book 
b. Zhangsan-de san-ben shu 
Zhangsan-poss three-CL book 
'three books of Zhangsan (Agent or Possessor)' 

The structure of (16) will prevent the cooccurrence of a classifier and 
a genitive NP such as the one in (17a). To solve this problem. Tang 
1990 suggests the structure in (18), with a CLP projected above NP 
containing two base-generated heads, namely, Num and CL. 




Sung: A typological study of NP extraction from QP 409 

The double-headed structure captures the empirical facts that show 
the numeral and the classifier syntactically behave as one unit, al- 
though in terms of X-bar Theory it is not the typical structure. I will 
contend in the following section that (18) is not only theoretically 
undesirable but also empirically inadequate. Classifiers are some- 
times loosely called measure words because they seem to appear in 
the same position inside a noun phrase, as shown in (19): 

(19) a. san ben shu 

three-CL book 'three books' 

b. san-ge ren 

three-CL man 'three men' 

c. san-bei kafei 

three-cup coffee 'three cups of coffee' 

d. san-bang tang 

three-pound sugar 'three pounds of sugar' 

A semantic difference between classifiers and measure words is the 
fact that true classifiers such as ben and ge in (19a,b) do not denote 
any 'measure' in terms of shape, size, weight, etc. as do bei and bang 
in (19c,d). Historically classifiers and measure words were both once 
independent nouns, which fact makes distinguishing the difference 
between the two groups even more difficult. One can claim that on 
semantic grounds ben and ge are precisely measures for books and 
men in Chinese and that the gloss of each phrase in (19a, b) can be 
rendered as 'three units/counts of books" and 'three units/counts of 
men.' The syntactic difference between the two in Chinese noun 
phrases demonstrated in (20), however, suggests that it cannot be 
the case. 

(20) a. *san ben de shu 

three-CL book 'three books' 

b. *san-ge de ren 

three-CL man 'three men' 

c. san-bei de kafei 

three-cup coffee 'three cups of coffee' 

d. san-bang de tang 

three-pound sugar 'three pounds of sugar' 

As shown in (20c, d), the genitive Case marker de in (20) can be 
freely inserted between the measure word and the noun, whereas 
such an insertion between a classifier and a measure word results in 
ungrammaticality, as shown in (20a, b). Another difference comes 
from the compatibility of the word ban 'half with measure words 
but not classifiers: 

(21) a. *san ben ban (de) shu 

three-CL half book 

'three and a half books' 
b. san-bei ban (de) kafei 
three-cup half coffee 

'three and a half cups of coffee' 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

Considering the possibility of genitive Case marking on the mea- 
sure words (what Abney's structure would allow) and the observa- 
tions that numeral-classifier behaves as one unit (what Tang's 
structure would capture), I propose a modified version of Abney's 
structure for Chinese noun phrases, shown in (22): 











In structure (22), the CLP is base-generated under spec of NP, a 
position where genitive Case can be assigned. This solves Tang's 
problem in (18). I will argue that true classifiers behave differently 
from measure words only in that they are bound morphemes and 
must incorporate into Num, whereas measure words can incorporate 
as true classifiers but does not need to. Evidence from Chinese phon- 
ology further supports the incorporation analysis. The Chinese tone 
sandhi rule changes a low (L) tone to a rising (LH) tone when it is 
followed by another low tone. This rule is sensitive to the morpho- 
logical or syntactic structure as shown in (23): 

(23) a. wo xiang ni 'I miss you' 

you go good 'it is good for you to leave' 
(reading 'please walk carefully' irrelevant) 

The underlying tone representation of (23a, b) is three consecutive 
low tones, but the output is different. (23a) has the structure of 
[ X [ Y Z ] ]. Since the application of the tone sandhi rule applies 
cyclically from inner bracket outwards, the rule applies vacuously at 
the second cycle and gives the output of [ L [ LH L ] ]. (23b) has the 
structure of [ [ X Y ] Z ], which renders [ LH L ] L ] at the first cycle 
and [ LH LH ] L ] as the final output. I have adopted (22) as the struc- 
ture of Chinese noun phrase, now simplified below in (24). 


xiang ni 


L L 




zou hao 


L L 



Sung: A typological study of NP extraction from QP 411 



Num ^^P 

CL N' 


The structure of (24) is identical to that of (23a) in the sense that it 
is right-branching; therefore, by analogy, a string of three consecu- 
tive low tones in such a noun phrase should render a possible output 
of [ L [ LH L ] ]. The examples in (25) show that this prediction is not 
borne out. 

(25) a. wu ba san 'five-CL umbrella' 

L L L 

-> LH LH L (*L LH L) 
b. wu zhongjiu 'five-kind dog' 

L L L 

-> LH LH L (*L LH L) 

The correct output patterns with the left-branching structure in 
(23b). But this is expected if we assume that the classifier incor- 
porates into numeral and changes the structure from right-branching 
to left-branching. The movement is shown in (26). 



Num NP 

Num CL , N' 


Note that the movement approach in (26) also provides an account 
for the difference between true classifiers and measure words in 
terms of de insertion discussed in (20). Chinese true classifiers must 
undergo incorporation and therefore are unable to assign a nominal 
Case, genitive de in this case, to the NP. On the other hand, measure 
words, being free morpheme, may choose to stay in situ and trigger 
(le insertion, or optionally it may incorporate into the numeral. This 
analysis accounts for the asymmetry of de insertion of classifiers and 
measure words in Chinese. By adopting Abney's analysis in (16), I 
now face the problem that turned Tang away from Abney to propose 
(18), namely the possibility to insert a possessor phrase between the 
classifier and the head noun, as shown in (17). I will assume that NP 
also have potential NP shell structure, analogous to Larson's proposal 
for double object verbs. Assuming that, the noun phrases in (17) can 
be represented by two different structures in (27): 

412 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

(27) a. Zhangsan de san-ben shu 'Zhangsan's three-CL books' 

[dp possessor [qp numeral-classifierj [np tj [ N]]]] 
b. san-ben Zhangsan de shu 'three-CL Zhangsan's books' 

[qp numeral-classifierj [np U [np possessor [ N]]]] 

3. Partitive case under incorporation 

We see that the analogy between a Romance clitic and a Chinese/ 
Japanese classifier is complete. Inevitably we encounter the problem 
related to the Case Theory. It is argued in Jaeggli 1986, Baker, 
Johnson, & Roberts 1989 among others that Case absorption takes 
place under incorporation. Sung 1992 argues that regular Case 
assignment can be done in the incorporation structure, besides the 
generally assumed spec-head agreement relation and government 
relation. In the previous two chapters, we have discussed how clitics 
or implicit agent X^s acquires Case under incorporation. Here I want 
to pursue the idea that classifiers acquire Case under incorporation. 

Historically, all classifiers (i.e. bound and free classifiers) were 
once nouns. And in modern Chinese, they still exhibit (heavily re- 
duced) nominal features such as forming a compound measure word 
by being modified by adjectives. 

(28) a. yi da-ben shu 

one big-CL book 
b. yi xiao-zhang zhi 
one small-CL paper 

It is therefore plausible to assume, analogous to Romance clitics, that 
the incorporating classifiers qualify for being a Case bearer in the 
similar fashion of an implicit Agent in passives and middles as well 
as the impersonal clitic se/si in various Romance impersonal struc- 
tures. Consider the following the structures: 


a. DP t». DP 

D NumP=QP D NumP=QP 

Num NP Num NP 

N Num 


(29a) represents the structure of a Romance noun phrase; (29b) that 
of Chinese. Following the claim I discussed earlier in the clitic con- 
struction and causative construction, I assume that the Case, inherent 
or structural, must transmit through DP to NP. This is straightforward 
in Romance. NP gets Case via Num? which is not nominal. The Chi- 
nese noun phrase shown in (29b) is different. The Case transmitted 
down from DP must go through NumP which now contains a classi- 

Sung: A typological study of NP extraction from QP 413 

fier, a potential Case bearer. I propose that the Case can be absorbed 
there by the classifier and does not percolate down to NP. This anal- 
ysis provides a plausible account for the landing site difference be- 
tween Romance and East Asian languages. First let me summarize the 
assumptions that 1 made so far: 

(30) a. QP receives partitive Case under government/sisterhood by 
existential, unaccusative, passive verbs, etc. 

b. Classifiers must and measure words may incorporate into Q. 

c. Incorporated classifiers, like Romance clitic seisi, can bear 

(30a) is basically what Belletti's and Lasnik' partitive Case assign- 
ment. DE is explained under the stipulation that partitive Case is 
incompatible with definite NPs. (30b) and (30c) are aimed to explain 
why NPs in East Asian languages can be extracted from a QP and land 
in a Case position. As shown in (29b), when the classifier absorbs the 
Case. NP is left Caseless and therefore raises to a Case position. The 
optionality of Case absorption by classifiers can be explained by the 
fact that the classifier does not have an independent 0-role so Case is 
not required by the Visibility Condition. This in turn explains the 
optionality of NP raising. Now consider the following structure: 


In structure (31), the head noun of NP undergoes incorporation 
in its clitic form. It first incorporates into Q, receiving Partitive Case 
under incorporation, and then cliticizes onto Intl. This is, I assume, 
exactly what happens in // en a ete tue trois t. A serious problem 
arises when we consider the possibility of bare NP movement. Again 
in (31), if hommes undergoes NP movement, it first moves into spec 
of QP. Since Partitive Case is strictly structural, it is not assigned 
through spec-head relation. The Caseless NP hommes then moves on 
lo any Case position available, in this case Nominative Case position 
in the spec of IP. The movement appears to be all legitimate, the 
output, however, is completely ungrammatical: 

(32) *Hommes ont ete tues trois t. 

men have been killed three 

This is striking because as we mentioned earlier this derivation is 
very productive in languages with an intermediate level of classilier 


Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

phrase between QP and NP. Consider the following structure from 
East Asian languages: 




From our earlier discussion, we have concluded that classifiers in- 
corporate into Q like clitics and that they are case bearing nominal 
heads. The Caseless NP will have to obtain Case by moving through 
specs to a Case position. And this is what happens in Chinese unac- 
cusative, BA, and BEI structures: 

(34) a. Keren lai le san ge t. 

guest come-asp three GL 
'There came three guests.' 

b. Wo ba Liside youpiao mai diao le san zhang t. 
I BA Lisi's stamp sell-off-asp three Q. 

'I sold three of Lisi's stamps.' 

c. Liside youpiao bei wo mai diao le san zhang t. 
Lisi's stamp BEI I sell-out-asp three CL 
'Three of Lisi's stamps were sold by me.' 

I have argued that restricting partitive Case assignment to head- 
complement relation can derive DE. The landing site difference, on 
the other hand, is accounted for by the assumption that classifiers 
absorb partitive Case. In the following section, I will show how some 
desirable consequences are derived from the proposed analysis. 

4. Consequence: participle agreement in romance 

One consequence coming from the partitive Case analysis devel- 
oped here is the different patterns of past participle agreement in 
partitive constructions represented by two Romance languages: 
French and Italian. 

(35) a. Marie en a fait(*es) trois. (des compositions) 

Marie of-them has made three 
b. Maria ne ha viste tre. 

Maria of-them has seen three 


Sung: A typological study of NP extraction from QP 415 

As shown in (35a), French partitive clitic en cannot trigger agree- 
ment while the Italian equivalent (35b) does trigger agreement. In 
Sung 1992, I have argued that clitic movement is strictly head- 
movement and that we need not confine ourselves to the assumption 
that only spec-head relation can trigger agreement. I proposed an A- 
type versus A'-type of Incorporation, stated below in (36), to account 
for the French and Italian participle agreement facts: 

(36) A-incorporation triggers agreement, where A-incorporation is 
defined as follows: In [x^ [H][X]], H is in an A-position iff 

X assigns Case to H. 

One prediction of the A/A' incorporation analysis is that when a clitic 
can only receive Case under A-incorporation, for instance, when it 
does not hold a head-complement relation with the Case assigning 
verb, agreement is obligatory. I argued that the dichotomy between 
the agreement facts of first/second person clitics and third person 
clitics found in Italian is such a case. 

(37) a. Maria, I'ho incontrata/*incontrato. 

'Maria, her I have met.' 
b. Tu (fem.), ti ho incontrato/incontrata. 
'You, you I have met.' 

Koopman (UCLA lectures, 1992) points out that a dichotomy of a 
stricter sort also exists in certain groups of African languages. She 
suggests that first and second person pronouns may be attached at a 
higher level in the structure. If Koopman's suggestion is correct, then 
the dichotomy in (37) is predicted. Consider the structure in (38): 




First and second person clitics mi/ti are base-generated under DP, 
maintaining head-complement structure with the verb. It can either 
receive Case in situ under head-complement relation or receive Case 
under A-incorporation. The latter instance will trigger head-head 
agreement and the former instance does not trigger agreement 
because when the clitic later moves up the adjoining position is an A' 
position. This explains why the agreement is optional. Third person 

416 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 ( 1994) 

clitics lo/la are base-generated under NP. They do not get Case in situ 
since it holds no head-complement relation with the verb. Head to 
head movement applies and first moves the third person clitic to D. 
Since the clitic is not the head of the structure [d [N] [D]], it cannot get 
Case there. The clitic moves further up to the verb, receive Case from 
it under A-incorporation, and trigger agreement. Since third person 
clitics can only receive Case under incorporation, agreement is 

In favor of this line of thinking is the fact that the Definiteness 
Effect can be easily captured structurally. Consider (39), a structure 
different from (38) only in that the object is an indefinite QP. 



When the verb in (39) does not have accusative Case to assign, QP 
can still get structural partitive Case under head-complement rela- 
tion. If the object is definite, there must be an intervening DP above 
QP to block the Case assignment. That is DE. 

Now let us consider the partitive clitic en in the French sentence 
(35a) Marie en a fait (^agreement) trois 'Marie has done three of 
them'. NO must move to Infl via head-to-head movement and first 
move to position B in (39), which according to our analysis can re- 
ceive partitive Case from Q under head-head relation. N^ then is real- 
ized as a partitive clitic en. Agreement between en and the numeral 
quantifier is supposed to be triggered for it's an A-incorporation. I 
contend that it is indeed the case but since numeral quantifiers can- 
not inflect in French there is no overt morphology to confirm my 

The Italian sentence in (35b) Maria ne ha viste tre 'Maria of- 
them has seen-agreement three' poses a serious problem to our anal- 
ysis. It appears that the Italian N^ must move into Q first, without 
getting Case, and moves on into V and receives Case in position A in 
(39). It triggers agreement on V and is realized phonetically as n e 
before it finally moves into Infl. The problem for this derivation is 
that there is no principled way to block N^ from getting Case inside Q. 
Positing stipulations to prevent Italian N^ from receiving partitive 

Sung: A typological study of NP extraction from QP 417 

Case in position B is certainly awkward. To maintain our assumption 
that partitive Case is assigned to Q, we have to assume that the Ital- 
ian NO, just like its French counterpart, also receives partitive Case 
from position B in (39), and not position A. 1 attribute the agreement 
difference between (35a) and (35b) to not come from a parametric 
difference in partitive Case assignment but instead to come from the 
same source that creates the contrast between the French example in 
(40a) and the Italian example in (40b). 

(40) a. Trois filles ont ete(*es) tuees, 

'Three girls have been killed.' 
b. Maria e stata/*stato accusata. (Burzio 1986:54-55) 
'Maria has been accused.' 

As shown in (40a), French does not have multiple agreement on 
participles, but Italian requires agreement on both past participles of 
the auxiliary stato 'been' and the verb acciisato 'accused'. This idio- 
syncratic property of Italian may have caused the agreement on the 
participle in partitive construction. The paradigm in (35) then can be 
represented in (41): 

(41) a. Marie en a fait(*es) trois(agreement, covert) t. 

Marie of-them has made three 
b. Maria ne ha viste tre(agreement, covert) t. 

Maria of-them has seen three 

With regards to participle agreement, (41) neatly parallels (40). The 
parametric difference between French and Italian in terms of multi- 
ple agreement is a separate (and interesting) issue. For our purposes, 
1 consider the partitive Case analysis developed here capable of ac- 
counting for the impossibility of agreement in the French partitive 


ABNEY, Steven P. 1987. The English noun phrase in its sentential 
aspect. MIT Ph.D. dissertation. 

Baker, Mark, Kyle Johnson, & Ian Roberts. 1989. Passive argument 
raised. Linguistic Inquiry 20.219-251. 

BELLETTI, Adriana. 1988. The case of unaccusatives. Linguistic Inquiry 

Burzio, Luigi. 1986. Italian syntax. Dordrecht: Reidel. 

CORTES, Corinne. 1992. Issues in Catalan syntax. UCLA Ph.D. disser- 

Jaeggli. Osvaldo. 1986. Passive. Linguistic Inquiry 17.587-622. 

Kayne, Richard 1987. Null subjects and clitic climbing. MIT, ms. 

. 1989. Null subjects and clitic climbing. The null subject param- 
eter, ed. by O. Jaeggli and K. Safir. Dordrecht: Kluwer. 

LasNIK, Howard. 1992. Case and expletives: notes toward a para- 
metric account. Linguistic Inquiry 23.38 1 -405. 

RlZZI, Luigi. 1982. Issues in Italian syntax. Dordrecht: Foris. 

418 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

SPORTICHE, Dominique. 1991. Movement, agreement, and case. UCLA, 

Sung, Kuo-ming. A/A' incorporation and agreement. Proceedings of 

the Western Conference on Linguistics, Vol. 5. 346-355. 
Tang, Chih-Chen J. 1990. A note on the DP analysis of the Chinese 

noun phrase. Linguistics 28.337-354. 



Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Ellen Thompson 

University of Maryland 

Assuming a Reichenbachian approach to tense, I pro- 
pose a regular mapping between the syntactic and semantic 
representation of tense, whereby the Event point is asso- 
ciated with the head of VP, the Reference point with the 
head of Aspect Phrase, and the Speech point with the head 
of Tense Phrase. I then argue that temporal adjunct clauses 
interpreted as simultaneous with the matrix event ('while', 
'as' clauses) are associated syntactically with VP, since the 
Event points of the adjunct and matrix clause are linked, 
while nonsimultaneous adjunct clauses ('before', 'after' 
clauses), are associated with AspP, since their Event points 
are not linked. 

1. Introduction 

The aim of this paper is to offer an analysis of the syntax of 
tense which maintains a principled mapping between the semantic 
and the syntactic representation of tense, and to show that this anal- 
ysis makes possible an explanatory account of the distribution of 
temporal adjunct clauses. In section 2, I summarize the Reichen- 
bachian approach to the semantics of tense that 1 adopt here. In sec- 
tion 3, I propose that the basic semantic units of tense, the Event, 
Reference, and Speech points, are represented by syntactic heads in a 
one-to-one fashion. I thus follow much recent work on the syntax of 
tense which claims that the temporal information of a clause is re- 
presented not only in TP, (Tense Phrase), but in other phrases of the 
clause as well. I argue that the other phrases that carry tense 
information of the clause are VP and AspP (Aspect Phrase). 

In section 4, 1 show that this analysis paves the way for a 
straightforward account of the distribution of temporal adjunct 
clauses. I argue that depending on where 'when' clausal adjuncts are 
attached in the clause, they receive a different temporal interpre- 
tation, since they are associated with different parts of the tense 
structure of the main clause. 'When' clauses which have their Event 
points interpreted as simultaneous with the matrix Event point are 
associated to VP, in a local relation with the matrix Event point in the 
head of VP; nonsimultaneous 'when' clauses, on the other hand, are 
associated to AspP, not being related to the matrix Event point. 
Syntactic evidence in favor of this analysis from VP constituency 
tests and the interaction of negation with 'when' clauses is discussed. 

420 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

I argue in section 5 that temporal connectives such as 'while' 
and 'before' which force either a simultaneous or a nonsimultaneous 
reading of the temporal adjunct are unambiguously either associated 
to VP (simultaneous) or AspP (nonsimultaneous). Evidence for this 
analysis comes from the distribution of temporal PP adverbs, as well 
as from c-command asymmetries between the direct object and 
these adjuncts with respect to quantifier binding, negative polarity 
item licensing, and binding condition C effects. I conclude this section 
with a discussion of antecedent-contained deletion constructions with 
temporal adjunct clauses, which support the claims developed in this 

2. Framework 

I assume a Reichenbachian approach to the semantic represen- 
tation of tense, where tenses are composed of three 'time points': the 
Event point, the Speech point, and the Reference point (Reichenbach 
1947). This system is illustrated in (1), where the Event point is the 
time of Mary's leaving, the Reference point is the time by which 
Mary leaves (in this sentence, 2:00), and the Speech point is the time 
at which the sentence is uttered. 

(1) At 2:00, Mary had left. 

Following Hornstein's 1990 neo-Reichenbachian approach to 
tense, tenses are composed by linearly ordering these three time 
points. The structures of the basic tenses of English are as in (2). If 
two points are separated by a line, the leftmost point is interpreted 
as temporally preceding the other point, and if two points are 
separated by a comma, they are interpreted as contemporaneous: 

(2) S,R,E present 
E , R _ S past 
S_R,E future 

E _ S , R present perfect 

E _ R _ S past perfect 

S _ E _ R future perfect 

To illustrate this system, notice that in the tense structure of the 
simple past tense in (2), the Event time occurs temporally before the 
Speech time. This is the correct temporal interpretation for a past 
tense sentence, as shown in (3), where the event of buying takes 
place before the Speech time, when the sentence is uttered. 

(3) Mary bought a car. 

3. A syntax for tense 

Assuming that the semantic primitives of tense are temporal 
points, the issue for syntax is if these points are represented struc- 
turally, and, if they are, how they are represented. I follow recent 
researchers who have claimed that temporal points are the syntactic, 
as well as the semantic, primitives of tense (Hornstein 1977, 1981, 
1990; Zagona 1988, 1990; Giorgi & Pianesi 1991; Stowell 1993). In 

Thompson: The syntax and semantics of temporal adjunct clauses 421 

particular, I propose the Tense Structure Mapping Condition: 

(4) Tense Structure Mapping Condition: Time points are associated 
with syntactic heads in a one-to-one fashion 

Given that there are three temporal points, the Tense Structure 
Mapping Condition entails that the tense information of the clause is 
represented by three syntactic heads. I propose that the time points 
of Tense are associated with syntactic heads in the following way: the 
Event point is associated with the head of VP, the Speech point with 
the head of TP, and the Reference point with the head of AspP, 
located between TP and VP. 

4. Tense structure of temporal adjunct clauses 

Assuming that the tense information of the clause is spread out 
in different parts of the clause as discussed above, I examine in this 
section the syntax of temporal adjunct clauses, which are associated 
with the tense structure of the main clause. I show that the distri- 
bution of temporal adjuncts gives evidence for the present proposal 
about the syntax of tense.' 

I assume Hornstein's 1990 formulation of the derivation of tense 
structures, according to which temporal points can be linked to each 
other, resulting in the points being interpreted as contemporaneous. 
In the derivation of the tense structure of temporal adjunct clauses, 
temporal points of the adjunct are linked to temporal points of the 
matrix clause, yielding temporal dependency. 

Consider the sentence in (5). 

(5) Mary left after Phyllis arrived. 

The matrix event of leaving is temporally located relative to the ad- 
junct event of arriving. In order to locate an event time with respect 
to another event time, it is necessary to hold everything else con- 
stant in the tense structure. This is accomplished by linking the 
Reference and Speech points. 2 An example of this type of linking is 
shown in (6), with the tense structure representation in (7). 

(6) John left the room when Mary came in. 

(7) El , Ri _Si 

I I 

E2, R2-S2 

4.1 Temporal ambiguity of 'when' clauses 

The interpretation of a 'when' clause is temporally ambiguous. 
This is illustrated by (8), which can have a simultaneous reading, 
with the leaving occurring at the same time as the coming in, or a 
nonsimultaneous reading, where the leaving and coming in take 
place at different times. 

(8) John left the room when Mary came in. 

422 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

I propose that on the simultaneous reading of a 'when' clause, 
the two Event points of the tense structure are linked, in addition to 
the Reference and Speech points, as illustrated in (9). The tense 
structure that results on the nonsimultaneous reading is as in (10), 
the one proposed by Hornstein for temporal adjuncts in general. 
Here, the Event points are not linked, and hence, are not contem- 

(9) El , Ri _ Si 

I I I Simultaneous 

E2 , R2 - S2 

(10) El ,Ri _ Si 

I I Nonsimultaneous 

E2 , R2 _ S2 

This semantic analysis of temporal adjunct clauses, combined 
with the syntax of tense that I have proposed above, offers an inter- 
esting account of the syntax of temporal adjunct clauses. Given the 
claim that the Event point is located in the head of VP, and the Refer- 
ence and Speech points are located higher up in inflectional heads, a 
natural structural account for the ambiguity of temporal adjunct 
clauses emerges. I propose that temporal adjunct clauses can be ad- 
joined either to VP or to AspP; when the clause is adjoined to VP, the 
simultaneous reading results, and when it is adjoined to AspP, the 
nonsimultaneous reading results. 3 

4.2 Constituency tests 

In this section, I present structural evidence for the hypothesis 
that temporal adjunct clauses on the simultaneous reading are ad- 
joined to VP, while temporal adjunct clauses on the nonsimultaneous 
reading are adjoined to AspP. Constituency test data show that when 
the VP is isolated by Pseudoclefting (11) and VP fronting (12), the 
only reading available for the adjunct is the simultaneous reading, 
where Mary's coming in is contemporaneous with John's leaving. 

(11) What John did was leave the room when Mary came in. 

(12) John claimed that he left the room when Mary came in, and 
left the room when Mary came in he did. 

This data is predicted on the approach developed here, since in 
these constructions, the adjunct is necessarily associated with VP, 
resulting in the simultaneous reading.'* 

4.3 Negation and 'wlien' clauses 

Additional evidence for this structural ambiguity comes from 
data involving the scope of sentential negation. Sentential negation 
seems to take scope over adjuncts on a simultaneous reading, and not 
over adjuncts on a nonsimultaneous reading. This follows on the ac- 
count developed here, since on the simultaneous reading the adjunct 

Thompson: The syntax and semantics of temporal adjunct clauses 423 

is VP-adjoined, and hence within the scope of negation, and on the 
nonsimultaneous reading, the adjunct is AspP-adjoined, and hence 
outside the scope of negation. 

On the simultaneous reading of (13), where the leaving takes 
place at the same time as the coming in, negation has scope over the 
adjunct; the sentence means 'It is not when John comes in that Mary 
leaves the room'. The reading with negation not taking scope over 
the adjunct is not possible, where the sentence would mean 'It is 
when John comes in that Mary does not leave the room'. 

(13) Mary didn't leave the room when John came in. 

However, the judgments reverse on the nonsimultaneous reading of 
(13), where 'It is (either) before or after John's coming in that the 
leaving takes place'. Focusing on the reading where Mary's leaving 
occurs before John's coming in, the only available reading is where 
the adverb is outside the scope of negation; 'It is before John's com- 
ing in that Mary does not leave the room', and the reading with the 
adjunct within the scope of negation is not available, where 'It is not 
before John's coming in that Mary leaves the room'. 

5. Other temporal connectives 

Thus far, the analysis of temporal adjuncts presented here has 
focused on the distribution of 'when' clauses, which I have claimed 
are ambiguous between being adjoined to VP or to AspP, accounting 
for the simultaneous and nonsimultaneous readings, respectively. 
However, it is clear that other temporal connectives behave differ- 
ently with respect to the readings that they permit. For example, 
'while' and 'as' require simultaneity of the events of the matrix and 
adjunct clause; in (14), the events of singing and dancing occur nec- 
essarily at the same time. I claim therefore that adjuncts with these 
connectives are unambiguously associated to VP. 

(14) Mary sang while John danced. 

'Before' and 'after' clauses do not permit the two Event times to 
be contemporaneous; in (15), the walking and the leaving are neces- 
sarily noncontemporaneous. Following the same reasoning as above, 
these clauses are therefore unambiguously adjoined to AspP. 

(15) Bob walked the dog after Mary left. 

5.1 Temporal clauses and PP adverbs 

Evidence for the tense structure proposed here for simultaneous 
versus nonsimultaneous temporal adjunct clauses comes from the 
distribution of temporal PP adverbs. Following Hornstein 1990, I as- 
sume that temporal adverbs modify the temporal points of tense 
structure. For example, in the sentence in (16), the adverb at 2:00' 
modifies the Reference point of the sentence; it specifies the time by 
which the leaving takes place. 

(16) At 2:00, John had eaten his lunch. 

424 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

Recall that nonsimultaneous adjunct clauses have their Refer- 
ence and Speech points linked to the matrix clause, while simulta- 
neous adjunct clauses have their Event point linked as well. Given 
this, we predict that adverbial modification of the Event point of a 
simultaneous adjunct necessarily entails modification of the Event 
point of the matrix clause. This is in fact borne out, as shown by (17), 
with the tense structure in (18), where 'at 9:00' modifies the Event 
point of the adjunct clause, and also necessarily modifies the Event 
point of the matrix clause — both the walking and the leaving take 
place at 9:00. 

(17) John left the room while Mary was walking home at 9:00. 

(18) El , Ri _Si 

I I I 

E2, R2-S2 

at 9:00 

However, as illustrated by (19), with the tense structure in (20), 
adverbial modification of the Event point of a nonsimultaneous ad- 
junct clause does not entail modification of the Event point of the 
matrix clause; on the reading where the event of coming in takes 
place at 3:00, the event of leaving does not. 

(19) John left the room after Mary came in at 3:00. 

(20) Ei,Ri _ Si 

I I 

E2 , R2 - S2 
at 3:00 

The distribution of adverbial PP modifiers with temporal ad- 
junct clauses thus gives evidence for the analysis offered here. 

5.2 Direct object/adjunct asymmetries 

Further evidence in support of the present proposal for the 
syntax of different types of temporal adjunct clauses comes from 
structural asymmetries between direct object and adjunct. It has 
been noted in the literature that certain adverb phrases seem to be 
c-commanded by their direct object. (Anderson, 1979; Contreras, 
1984; Larson, 1988; Stroik, 1990). This data is illustrated in (21), 
where the direct object seems to c-command into the adverb phrase. 

In (21a), the direct object quantifier phrase 'every crewman' 
seems to bind the pronoun 'his' in the adjunct, while in (21b), the 
negative polarity item 'at all' within the adjunct is licensed by the di- 
rect object 'no work'. The ungrammaticality of (21c) is explained as a 
binding condition C violation if the direct object pronoun c- 
commands the coreferential name within the adjunct. 


Thompson: The syntax and semantics of temporal adjunct clauses 425 

(21) a. Quantifier binding 

The captain irritated every crewmanj by visiting hisj cabin 
with no warning. 

b. Negative polarity item 

John does no work at all quickly. 

c. Binding condition C effects 

*Mary visited himj during John'sj incarceration. 

Lasnik & Saito 1991 propose that this data can be accounted for 
by assuming the minimalist approach to Case theory, where the di- 
rect object in English moves out of the VP at LF for Case-checking in 
the Spec of AgrO (following Chomsky 1993). Hence, at LF, the raised 
object asymmetrically c-commands into a VP-adjoined adverb, as 
shown in (22): 


. . . AgrOP 

The analysis offered here predicts that the direct object is in a 
position at LF which c-commands into a VP-adjoined adjunct, but not 
an AspP-adjoined adjunct. The relevant data to check this prediction 
is given in (23a)-(e). In (23ai), with a temporal adjunct which re- 
quires a simultaneous reading and is therefore, on the present anal- 
ysis, VP-adjoined, quantifier-binding is possible. However, in (23aii), 
with a nonsimultaneous temporal adjunct, quantifier binding is not 
possible, since at LF, the quantifier phrase does not c-command into 
the adverbial clause which is adjoined to AspP. 

As shown in (23b), there is a similar contrast with negative po- 
larity item licensing, where licensing is possible only on the simulta- 
neous reading, which is forced in (23bi). The negative polarity item 
reading is not available in (23bii), since the adverbial is adjoined too 
high up in the clause structure. (23c) shows the expected binding 
condition C effects — when the adverbial clause is VP-adjoined as in 
(23ci), the coreferential reading is worse than when the adjunct is 
adjoined higher up, as in (23cii). 

(23) a. Quantifier binding 

i. Mary saw every worker; as hej was asking for a raise, 
ii. *Mary saw every workerj before hej asked for a raise. 

b. Negative polarity item licensing 

i. John identified no problems while anyone was around. 

ii. *John identified no problems after anyone had left. 

426 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

c. Binding condition C effects 

i. *Mary saw hinij while Johnj was presenting his paper. 

ii. Mary saw himj after Johnj presented his paper. 

To conclude, evidence from quantifier binding, negative polarity 
item licensing and binding condition C effects show that the position 
of simultaneous temporal adjunct clauses is within the c-command 
domain of direct objects at LF, while the site of nonsimultaneous 
temporal adjunct clauses is outside the c-command domain of the di- 
rect object. This data therefore supports the structural analysis of the 
syntax of simultaneous and nonsimultaneous temporal adjuncts 
pursued here. 

5.3 Temporal adjuncts and antecedent-contained deletion 

Simultaneous and nonsimultaneous temporal adjunct clauses 
differ in an interesting way with respect to the VP deletion struc- 
tures known as antecedent-contained deletion (ACD). In this section, 
I show that the account developed here of the distinction between 
the two types of temporal adjuncts explains this contrast. 

Sentences with VP deletion such as (24) below are standardly 
analyzed as being interpreted by the first VP being copied into the 
position of the gapped VP. 

(24) John [yp kissed Bill's mother] and Sally did [yp e ] too. 

ACD sentences such as (25) are problematic for this approach, 
since in these constructions the VP that is supposed to be copied into 
the gapped position itself contains the gap. If the VP is copied into 
the gap, it will still contain a gap, which will need to be filled by the 
VP, and so on. This is the so-called 'infinite regress problem' of ACD 

(25) John [yp kissed everyone that Sally did [yp e ] ] 

May 1985 points out that if quantified NPs move to adjoin to IP at 
LF, then the regress can be avoided. ^ In (25), the direct object 
'everyone that Sally did [yp e ]' moves to IP, and is hence outside the 
VP that the null VP is anaphorically related to. Copying can then take 
place with no regress problem. 

As noted by Hornstein 1994, ACD structures are licensed not 
only with arguments of the verb, but with adjuncts as well. Inter- 
estingly, ACD structures are permitted with nonsimultaneous adjunct 
clauses, but they are not permitted with simultaneous adjunct 
clauses, as illustrated in (26) (following Larson's 1987 analysis of 
structures such as in (26) as ACD constructions). 

(26) a. John left before/after Mary, 
b. *John left as/while Mary. 

The account developed here predicts this difference in behavior be- 
tween the two types of temporal adjuncts. Since nonsimultaneous 
adjuncts are outside of VP, the anaphoric VP can be copied into the 

Thompson: The syntax and semantics of temporal adjunct clauses 427 

gap without an infinite regress. However, simultaneous adjuncts are 
within VP, and hence copying this VP into the gap will create an 
infinite regress. ^ 

6. Conclusion 

To conclude, I have argued that there is a direct mapping be- 
tween the semantic and the syntactic representation of tense, such 
that temporal points are associated in a one-to-one fashion with 
syntactic heads. The temporal information of the clause is located in 
VP and AspP, as well as in TP. I then showed that this approach to 
the syntax of tense makes possible a well-motivated analysis of the 
structure of temporal adjunct clauses. I claimed that temporal ad- 
junct clauses associate either to VP or to AspP, and that when they 
are attached to VP, the Event point of the adjunct links to the Event 
point of the matrix clause, yielding a simultaneous reading, whereas 
when they are adjoined to AspP, the Event points do not link, and 
therefore a nonsimultaneous reading results. Evidence from con- 
stituency tests, scope of sentential negation, the distribution of tem- 
poral PP modifiers, structural asymmetries with the direct object, 
and antecedent contained deletion structures support the proposal 
pursued here for the structure of temporal adjunct clauses. 


* I would like to thank the audience at FLSM for^ questions and 
comments, as well as Norbert Hornstein, Jairo Nunes, and Juan 
Uriagereka for very helpful discussion. I would also like to acknowl- 
edge the University of Maryland Fellowship Office for financial 

' For related discussion of the distribution of temporal PP 
adverbs, see Thompson 1994. 

2 See Hornstein 1990 for empirical arguments for the linking of 
the Reference and Speech points in temporal adjunct clause struc- 

3 Other recent analyses which exploit different adjunction sites 
for temporal adjuncts are Koizumi 1991, Miyamoto 1993, and 
Johnston 1994. 

■^ This analysis supports the view that the 'linking' process in the 
derivation of tense structures is obligatory; when the adjunct is as- 
sociated to VP, linking of the Event points must take place, it is not 
optional (see Hornstein 1990 for further discussion of this point). 

5 See also Hornstein 1994 for an analysis where the movement 
out of VP is motivated by Case theory, and not quantifier raising. 

^ This analysis entails that the position of VP-associated simul- 
taneous adjuncts is within VP, and not VP-adjoined (see Larson 
1988, Stroik 1990). This is so since if these adjuncts were adjoined to 

428 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24: 1/2 (1994) 

VP, they should license ACD structures, since the inner VP could be 
copied to the gap contained in the clause adjoined to VP, without 
resulting in an infinite regress. 


Anderson, Mona. 1979. Noun phrase syntax. University of Connecticut 
at Storrs Ph.D. dissertation in Linguistics. 

Chomsky, Noam. 1993. A minimalist program for linguistic theory. 
The view from building 20: essays in honor of Sylvain 
Bromberger, ed. by K. Hale & S. Keyser, 1-52. Cambridge, Mas- 
sachusetts: MIT Press. 

CONTRERAS, Heles. 1984. A note on parasitic gaps. Linguistic Inquiry 

GlORGI, Alessandra & Fabio Pianesi. 1991. Toward a syntax of tempo- 
ral representations. Probus 3.2.1-27. 

HORNSTEIN, Norbert. 1977. Towards a theory of tense. Linguistic In- 
quiry 8.521-557. 

. 1981. The study of meaning in natural language: three ap- 
proaches to tense. Explanation in linguistics, ed. by N. Hornstein 
& D. Lightfoot, 116-151. London and New York: Longman. 

. 1990. As time goes by. Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press. 

. 1994. Logical Form: from GB to Minimalism. Department of 

Linguistics, University of Maryland at College Park, MS. 

Johnston, Michael. 1994. When clauses, adverbs of quantification and 
focus. Paper presented at WCCFL. 

Koizumi, Masatoshi. 1991. Syntax of adjuncts and the phrase struc- 
ture of Japanese. Ohio State University M.A. thesis in Linguistics. 

Larson, Richard. 1987. 'Missing prepositions' and the analysis of 
English free relative clauses. Linguistic Inquiry 18.239-266. 

. 1988. On the double object construction. Linguistic Inquiry 


Lasnik, Howard & Mamoru Saito. 1991. On the subject of infinitives. 
Paper presented at the Chicago Linguistic Society conference. 

May, Robert. 1985. Logical form: its structure and derivation. 
Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press. 

Miyamoto, Yoichi. 1993. Temporal adverbials in Japanese. Depart- 
ment of Linguistics, University of Connecticut at Storrs, MS. 

ReichenbacH, Hans. 1947. Elements of symbolic logic. New York: The 
Macmillan Company. 

Stroik, Thomas. 1990. Adverbs as V-sisters. Linguistic Inquiry 

Stowell, Timothy. 1993. The syntax of tense. Department of Lin- 
guistics, UCLA, MS. 

Thompson, Ellen. 1994. The structure of tense and the syntax of tem- 
poral adverbs. To appear in Proceedings of WCCFL 13. 

ZagONA, Karen. 1988. Verb phrase syntax. Dordrecht: Kluwer. 

. 1990. Times as temporal argument structure. Paper presented 

at the Time in language conference, Cambridge, Massachusetts. 

Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 
Volume 24, Numbers 1/2, 1994 


Natsuko Tsujimura 
Indiana University 

Talmy 1985 claims that many languages do not allow 
the co-occurrence of a manner of motion verb and a goal 
phrase, and Japanese has been claimed to be one such lan- 
guage. Among the three postpositions that express goal, 
however, one of them, made 'as far as', can appear with a 
manner of motion verb. This paper demonstrates various 
syntactic and semantic differences between the postposi- 
tions, and claims that made forms a resultative secondary 
predicate when it co-occurs with a manner of motion verb. 
I will further demonstrate that when such a co-occurrence 
obtains, the verb also displays unaccusative properties. 

1. Introduction 

Since Perlmutter's 1978 work, research on the identification and 
representation of unaccusative verbs has been undertaken cross-lin- 
guistically. Unaccusative verbs are identified by various diagnostic 
tests, many of which recognize the subject of an unaccusative verb as 
having the same syntactic behavior as the object of a transitive verb. 
On the basis of the parallelism between the subject of an unac- 
cusative verb and the object of a transitive verb, the sole argument 
of an unaccusative verb has been syntactically represented as the di- 
rect object at d-structure, which is moved to the subject position at 
s-structure in order to receive Case (cf. Burzio 1981). By contrast, the 
sole argument of an unergative verb remains as an external argu- 
ment throughout a derivation. The d-structure representations of 
these verb types are schematized as in (1). 

(1) a. transitive: [^ NP [yp V NP]] 

b. unaccusative: [^ [yp V NP]] 

c. unergative: [^ NP [yp V]] 

In spite of ample cross-linguistic evidence for the presence of 
unaccusativity, the question as to what makes a verb unaccusative 
casts a conceptual challenge in the research on unaccusativity in gen- 
eral. To this end, the examination of lexical semantic properties of 
verbs has been very helpful to isolate the semantic characteristics of 
unaccusativity. In this paper 1 will discuss cases where unergative 
manner of motion verbs change their classification to unaccusative in 
Japanese, and show that a stronger specification of change of location 
is required for the class shift. 

430 Studies in the Linguistic Sciences 24:1/2 (1994) 

2. Goal phrases and extended meaning 

Locative inversion has been claimed to serve as a diagnostic test 
for unaccusativity in English (cf. L. Levin 1985, Bresnan & Kanerva 
1989). This is why unergative manner of motion verbs such as run 
and swim cannot appear in this construction. However, when 
unergative manner of motion verbs co-occur with a goal phrase, 
locative inversion is exhibited with these verbs. Consider the contrast 
in (2-3). 

(2) a. The children ran in the room, 
b. *In the room ran the children. 

(3) a. The children ran into the room, 
b. Into the room ran the children. 

In (2) the locative inversion is not allowed, which indicates that the 
verb is unergative, while the grammatical inversion sentence in (3) 
suggests that run should be classified as unaccusative when it co-oc- 
curs with a goal phrase such as into the room. On the basis of this ob- 
servation. Levin & Rappaport 1989 claim that the generalization in 

(4) contributes to the determination of unaccusativity. 

(4) Verbs whose meaning includes a specification of inherent di- 
rection are found in the unaccusative syntactic configuration. 

(Levin & Rappaport 1989) 

Let us now see whether a similar situation obtains in Japanese. 
Talmy 1985 observes that many languages do not allow manner of 
motion verbs co-occurring with a goal phrase. Romance languages are 
examples of this, and as Yoneyama 1986 and L. Levin et al. 1988 in- 
dependently observe, Japanese is included in this group. For ex- 
ample, the postpositions ni 'to' and e 'to', which can form a goal 
phrase in Japanese, c